“I’m really disappointed” – teen sensation Raducanu is too strong for Bencic
Belinda Bencic missed the semi-finals at the US Open in New York. The 24-year-old from eastern Switzerland loses 3: 6, 4: 6 against British qualifier Emma Raducanu (WTA 150).
The frustration was written on Belinda Bencic’s face when she told the media two hours after her defeat. “What I am most disappointed about is that I did not show what I can actually do,” said the 24-year-old from eastern Switzerland about the 3: 6, 4: 6 defeat in just 82 minutes against the number 150 in the world. “There was practically nothing, so I’m really very disappointed.”
Bencic had a bad day on her first appearance this year at Arthur Ashe Stadium after little hint after the first games that the favorite could stumble. Raducanu, who competed against a top 20 player for the first time in her career, played incorrectly and seemed overwhelmed by the Swiss woman’s pace.
When the score was 3: 1, the thread broke in the Olympic champion’s game. While Raducanu got rid of her initial nervousness, mistakes crept into Bencic’s game. The Swiss serve was no longer a strength, in the end there were five double faults against an ace. And Bencic also had trouble with the return. “Nothing at all worked what I set out to do.”
On the way to her Olympic victory in Tokyo, Bencic had found a way out of every tricky situation. She didn’t succeed against Raducanu, although she had one or two options, especially in the second set. In the Briton’s last two service games, she was 30: 0 ahead, but she could no longer develop a chance to rebreak.
Raducanu stayed cool. The 18-year-old British made her debut on the WTA tour in Nottingham just three months ago. At Wimbledon, she caused a stir when she made her Grand Slam debut in the round of 16. “I think the serenity and mental strength come from my upbringing,” she said. “My parents taught me from an early age to have a positive attitude on the pitch.”
As the first ever to qualify, Raducanu made it to the round of the last four in Flushing Meadows. At Grand Slam tournaments, Christine Dorey (Australian Open 1978), Alexandra Stevenson (Wimbledon 1999) and Nadia Podoroska (French Open 2020) had only succeeded in this. “But I’m not here to chase records,” said Raducanu, who had booked her return flight for post-qualification. Thanks to her eighth win in New York, she will make up around 100 places in the ranking and rise to number 1 in the UK.
The numbers for the game:
graphic: us open
The eventful summer ended for Bencic. “I am still proud to have reached the quarter-finals, which was not easy after the Olympic Games.” And in the end nothing bad happened, the disappointment would quickly pass. Next she has planned to take part in the tournaments in Luxembourg and Ostrava before going back to the USA. At the beginning of November the final of the Fedcup in Prague is in the program. (ram / sda)
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