Former world No. 1 Martina Navratilova thinks the 2022 season will be hard for 2021 US Open champion Emma Raducanu. Raducanu, 19, became a superstar over the night after becoming the first qualifier in tennis history to win a Grand Slam.
“It’s going to be hard for her this year. Players have seen her, they know what to do against her. But most of all, she just needs matches. She’s the biggest wildcard for me. Because clearly, she has the ability to play great tennis," Navratilova told the WTA.
“Can she replicate it consistently enough? Eight WTA-level tournaments in her life? That’s half a season. I’d go into Wimbledon with 10, 12 matches under my belt. It’s going to be so much to handle physically, playing more matches, but everybody’s going to be gunning for her – that’s the thing that’s going to look good on their resume."
Navratilova was surprised by Raducanu's decision
Navratilova couldn't believe Raducanu's decision to fire coach Andrew Richardson following her US Open victory. After firing Richardson, Raducanu hired Angelique Kerber's ex-coach Torben Beltz.
“And the pressure’s going to be on her emotionally, as well. Being a Brit, she’s under a huge microscope, and it’s hard to get away from it. We’ll see. Coaching uncertainty, too. To me, that she let go of the coach that got her to the US Open was unfathomable.
I really don’t get that," Navratilova added. Also, Navratilova spoke about Barbora Krejcikova and Iga Swiatek. "Their games are really solid. Barbora needs to get a bit quicker and sort out the service toss. She plays the most like Barty, with a decent slice and good feel.
Swiatek, maybe the slice could be better. Both should emotionally be in a better place where everything is more familiar in that role as a favorite," Navratilova said of Krejcikova and Swiatek.