Emma Raducanu ended a 44-year drought without the British Grand Slam champion by beating Leila Fernandez in straight sets at the US Open. The 18-year-old tennis player made a splash at the Flushing Meadows tournament and did not even lose a set on her way to fame.
Radukanu now faces the unenviable task of succeeding at the top of the women’s game. She has already become a well-known figure in British sport by overcoming years of drought without a champion. Virginia Wade was the last British woman to win a Grand Slam tournament in 1977 at Wimbledon.
Raducanu is one of the leading contenders for Betfair’s prestigious Sports Personality of the Year award, with the aim of replicating 44-year-old Wade’s success by winning both a grand Slam tournament and an award. Given his success, no one will come close to preventing Raducan from winning the award, although his background deserves to be checked in the “Sports Personality of the Year” section of the Betting tips before the event on December 19.
Tennis success has been fleeting for the British public outside of Andy Murray over the past 40 years. Murray made a breakthrough in 2012 at the US Open by becoming the first Briton after Fred West to win a Grand Slam tournament before adding two more crowns to his name, winning Wimbledon twice. However, Murray’s career is in decline after two hip replacement operations. The Scot has struggled to stay relevant in the men’s game, but he has lost the energy he enjoyed at his peak.
It was clear that British tennis desperately needed an heir to the throne. Raducanu came out of nowhere as a wildcard at Wimbledon 2021. She touched the hearts of the British public by reaching the fourth round as an outsider, but was then brutally overcome by a difficult breath that forced her to descend to Center Court.
Many thought that Raducanu’s story was a good one and that she was a promising talent, but few expected her to reach her first Grand Slam Crown in a dominant way. At the tender age of 18, she has become an icon of the British game and will carry the nation’s hopes on her shoulders whenever she plays in a major tournament. It is a burden that Murray has had to bear for more than a decade and, as he will confirm, it is not the most pleasant experience.
This makes the development of Cameron norrie even more important. Over the past year, norrie has steadily climbed up the men’s rankings. The left-hander moved from New Zealand to the UK at the age of 17, although he was born in South Africa. Norrie was not able to make a decisive impact in the first years of his tenure on the ATP tour, but took his form in 2021 by advancing to the third round of three grand Slam tournaments, including Wimbledon.
The 26-year-old athlete gained self-confidence and achieved his breakthrough on the ATP tour by winning the Indian Wells Masters, defeating Nikoloz basilashvili in the final. Norrie can expect further increases in the rankings if he continues to perform at a high level in 2022. Given that the days of the “Big Three” are almost over, although Novak Djokovic still seems to be at the top of the rankings. Norrie will have the opportunity to leave her mark on the grand Slam tournaments by following in the footsteps of her compatriot in the women’s game.