Written by Staff Writer
Emma Raducanu is no stranger to high profile wins or defeats, but on Sunday she made history after losing to top seed Simona Halep in the Indian Wells final.
The 40th ranked Romanian player had won 12 of her last 14 matches going into the final but, just like Raducanu, she was unable to overcome the 18th seed’s impressive display.
Raducanu has recently come through a difficult period after being diagnosed with cancer last year. She won the Texas Kick-Off and Indian Wells tournaments in the same year but earlier this month she lost a Davis Cup doubles tie in Colombia.
“I’m never going to be able to live down these four matches (at Indian Wells), but when you go through something like that and you perform as well as I did, I feel like I should be praised.
“I don’t really live off of beating those people. I live off my wins and the way I played and obviously I had some great matches there, but overall I feel like I did alright and I am proud of that,” she told CNN Sport in Dubai.
“My confidence was OK. I had a few really good matches there and obviously when I had my better match, it went my way and when I didn’t I lost those matches and it was difficult.
“I still needed to get a few more matches in before that match (Halep). You know, I had my good matches, I had a couple of shaky matches, I had a couple of good matches, but I was in good position most of the time. I just need to cut myself some slack and take it game by game.”
Raducanu comes from a sporting family. Her parents were both tennis players and she took up the sport at the age of three. While she loved watching them play, she didn’t get to follow them for much of the day. But she did get to see them every weekend when they did their hair and makeup.
The three-time doubles grand slam winner who plans to play at Wimbledon this year says it’s a thrill to play under the stars in front of family and friends, and while she’s never been tempted to practice out in the sun, she enjoyed playing in front of the big screen as she walked down the stairs leading to the women’s final.
“It’s never like some romantic getaway, but, you know, the fact that it’s a bit romantic was the appeal of it, to be a part of such a big event — and the fact that it’s in the desert, being able to enjoy the experience of the court. It’s a beautiful thing.”
Raducanu will be playing her final ever tournament in Dubai next week. The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, which she calls “my home away from home,” continues until April 17.