Tim Henman says it is "massively exciting" to see Emma Raducanu returning to tennis as the former British tennis player thinks the key to the 21-year-old will be staying healthy for a longer period and gaining experience by playing tournaments.
After not playing any tournaments since April and undergoing three surgeries in May, Raducanu is returning to tennis in the first week of the 2024 season in Auckland. In 2023, Raducanu appeared in just five tournaments and she didn't win any titles but it should be noted that the Briton was constantly dealing with injuries and physical setbacks.
For now, Henman thinks Raducanu should just manage her expectations and focus on building a strong foundation for the future. “It’s massively exciting to have Raducanu coming back. I think it's important that everybody around tennis who's a fan, who's excited to see Raducanu back on the court, manages their expectations.
She's been out for a long, long time and she's still massively inexperienced. She's played so few tour level events, she's played so few matches in her whole professional career. So for me, from, let's say, the first three, four months of the year, I think if she could stay injury free and play a whole series of tournaments without any setbacks, I think that would be fantastic because there is no doubt about her ability," Henman told Eurosport.
Henman: Raducanu is an incredible player
Raducanu hasn't won any titles since the 2021 US Open but it was hard for her to find any consistency when she was constantly dealing with setbacks. If Raducanu stays healthy, Henman believes the Briton could do notable things.
“She's an incredible tennis player. She's working hard to build her physical resilience so that she can be out on court, be on tour and compete. I think patience is a really important word for Raducanu herself, but also all the people that are excited to see her come back.
She's 21 years of age. She's got the next ten years in front of her. She just needs to build that foundation so that she can get out on tour and compete and show the undeniable talents that she has," Henman said.