Emma Raducanu airs winter plan after struggles following historic US Open win

Emma Raducanu has revealed she will undertake an intense off-season to recover and prepare for the upcoming Australian Open.

The US Open champion has experienced a turbulent return to action since her historic Flushing Meadows performance. The 18-year-old crashed out of the Transylvania Open quarter-finals in humiliating fashion as she fell to junior rival Marta Kostyuk.

Kostyuk, whom Raducanu warned used to ‘destroy’ her at junior level, defeated the Brit in straight sets 6-2 6-1 – with the Bromley teenager committing seven double faults.

Raducanu announced she will play in the season-ending WTA Linz Open in Austria before taking a week off to rest and reflect on her breakout campaign.

The teenager will then travel to Melbourne to take part in the Australian Open – the 2022 curtain raiser – but Raducanu knows she cannot afford to let her training slip over the holiday period.

“I’m going to do a full off-season for sure,” she said. “After Linz, I will probably have a week off just to reset and get mentally fresh and physically fresh for the tough pre-season.

“It’s going to be my first one. And from what I’ve heard it’s a very difficult four weeks physically, so I just want to prepare for that and the next year.

“But I’m fully focused on trying to end strong and getting matches under my belt. Because I need matches at the moment. Ifeel like I had a really good run of matches ending in New York and then after not playing for a while you lose that.

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“So I just need to keep getting that under my belt.”

Raducanu, who is the current British number one after her sensational win, will travel Down Under in January as one of the top seeds – a welcome change after she competed in New York as a qualifier.

Despite her struggling form, Raducanu is ready to go for more major success in 2022.

“I’m really excited to go to Melbourne,” the 18-year-old added. “I played the juniors there and it’s an incredible city but obviously the pros are different.

“It’s going to be my first time going there as a pro. So it’s going to be a new experience, new locker room.

“I’m going to have to find my way around again and ask for directions but I’m excited to go.”

Raducanu undoubtedly hopes to have a full-time coach installed within her team after she split with coach Andrew Richardson less than two weeks after her US Open triumph.

The trial period for that vacancy remains ongoing at the Lawn Tennis Association’s headquarters in London, but Raducanu suggested it is ‘going in a good direction’.

The 2022 Australian Open will take place between January 17-30.

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