‘She doesn’t need to say anything’ Tennis champion slams Emma Raducanu’s ‘unkind’ critics

Emma Raducanu: British teen wins US Open

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BBC Breakfast presenters Roger Johnson and Sally Nugent spoke to former British number one Anne Keothavong as well as Naomi Broady to discuss Emma’s achievement. After the teenager had to leave Wimbledon earlier this year, Roger talked to the experts about the criticism she had faced from “unkind” viewers. Keothavong told BBC viewers that Raducanu’s tennis did the talking for her against critics.

“At Wimbledon, there were some people who made unkind comments,” Roger stated.

“They felt that she hadn’t got the mental strength to do it and didn’t use these words, but were effectively saying she bottled it.”

Emma saw her Wimbledon 2021 journey come to an end during her fourth-round match against Ajla Tomljanovic after she retired early from the tournament, but on Saturday went on to win the US Open final.

Roger continued: “If you’re going to answer your critics that’s a fairly emphatic way to do it.”

“She nailed it, she nailed it,” Anne replied. “She showed us what she was all about.

“And to her critics, well – she doesn’t need to say anything. Her tennis did all the talking.”

Emma was slammed by some on social media over dropping out of Wimbledon, but today the world is applauding her win.

Speaking to Naomi about the impact of social media, Sally commented: “Emma’s on social media, perhaps she will be looking at messages on her phone. How do you manage that level of attention and maybe some of the mean stuff that comes your way?”

Naomi, 31, responded: “I think it will actually help her that she’s the generation that has grown up with social media now.”

The tennis player explained: “I’m that kind of cross over generation that it hit us in my late teens, we were really learning on the job how to deal with it.

“But that generation, they’ve grown up with it. It’s the norm for them now isn’t it?

“I think she seems to be handling it really well and she said after the final she has a great team around her, she really trusts them all.”

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On Emma’s stunning victory, Anne commented: “I don’t think anyone can truly say they saw this coming so soon.

“We knew she was good, but to achieve what she has achieved – it’s just huge.

“It really is one of the greatest sporting achievements. To come through as a qualifier, win 10 matches without dropping a set – things like this just don’t happen.

“But what Emma has shown is just what an incredible tennis player she is. She was able to embrace the situation and maintain an aggressive style of tennis and there was just no back up from her.”

The former player added: “I’m still in disbelief. I have to keep pinching myself to just make sure what we witnessed last night really happened.”

“It’s like a film,” agreed Roger, with Naomi calling the win “absolutely crazy.”

She continued: “It’s so exciting for tennis at the moment in this country because that match last night was a cross over game.

“So many people that would never normally watch tennis tuned in to watch it.”

BBC Breakfast airs daily at 6am on BBC One.

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