Andy Roddick feels US Open champion Emma Raducanu must develop more consistency in order to take the next step in her career. According to Roddick, dealing with expectations is the toughest aspect of tennis, which is why Raducanu faced such a tough time on tour post her US Open triumph.
The 19-year-old Brit broke a slew of records en route to her maiden Grand Slam win at Flushing Meadows earlier this year. Raducanu became the first qualifier in the history of the sport to win a Major, and the fact that she did it without dropping a set made her feat all the more impressive.
However, Raducanu struggled for form after her US Open triumph, losing her opening matches at the BNP Paribas Open and the Linz Open. The youngster also failed to deliver at the Transylvania Open in Romania, where she fell in the quarterfinals.
Speaking about Raducanu's season on Tennis Channel, Andy Roddick pointed out that it is incredibly difficult to deal with expectations in tennis. The American reckons Raducanu was able to land the biggest title of her career at the US Open partly due to the fact that she was playing without any pressure on her shoulders.
“The hardest thing in sport in my opinion is expectation,” Andy Roddick told Tennis Channel.
“What she did at the US Open was unbelievable but it was largely without the expectation of ‘if you don’t win this final it’s bad for you’. It was all gravy from the third round on for her, without taking anything from her," Roddick added.
Now that Emma Raducanu has raised the bar with her performances at Flushing Meadows, Roddick reckons the teenager needs to prove that she can deal with pressure and win consistently.
"It is a different type of pressure set now. What I want to see is those consistent weeks where she is winning three or four matches every week," Roddick said.
The 2003 US Open champion believes it is the responsibility of Raducanu's team -- now led by Angelique Kerber's former coach Torben Beltz -- to ensure that the Brit can build on what she achieved this season.
"That would be the next benchmark if I am on her team, getting the consistency dialled in so that our baseline is top 20 in the world and our upper echelon is what you did at the US Open, which we were all amazed by," added the American.
Semifinals are a good benchmark for Emma Raducanu: Jim Courier
Four-time Slam champion Jim Courier also joined in on the discussion, backing Emma Raducanu to reach the last four of a Major in 2022. Courier believes the Brit should target at least a semifinal finish at a Grand Slam next year.
"Who’s to say she won’t make a deep run? I could easily see a semi-final and maybe further next year, but I think the semis is a good benchmark if I am on her team to target," Jim Courier said.