Rising British star Emma Raducanu showed respect for Maria Sakkari after demolishing the Greek in the US Open semifinal. Raducanu, ranked at No. 150 in the world, saw off world No. 18 Sakkari 6-4 6-1 to become the first qualifier ever to make a Grand Slam final.
Raducanu, who made it past the qualifying event to earn a main draw place at the US Open, has now won a total of nine matches so far at Flushing Meadows. "Yeah, I think today was always going to be a very difficult match, to play against Maria Sakkari.
She's an unbelievable player, probably one of the best athletes out there on tour. I knew before the match I was going to have to play some of my best tennis if I wanted a chance," Raducanu said. "Honestly I think I played some of my best tennis today, especially here in New York.
Yeah, I knew I was going to have to be super aggressive. I managed to execute. So, yeah, I'm just really happy with today's performance."
Raducanu 'surprised' by her campaign
Raducanu, 18, hasn't droppet a set en route to making the US Open final.
"A surprise. Yeah, honestly I just can't believe it. A shock. Crazy. All of the above," Raducanu admitted. "But, yeah, it means a lot to be here in this situation. I wanted obviously to, like, be playing Grand Slams, but I didn't know how soon that would be.
To be in a Grand Slam final at this stage of my career, yeah, I have no words. "Yeah, I just want to thank everyone who has supported me in this journey. I think that from a young age the LTA has taken me under its wing, really helped me out from a young age. My team back home and my team that are physically here with me, I wouldn't be here without them."