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"Serena Williams' longevity is unmatched, played 1969-born Steffi Graf & will now play 2002-born Emma Raducanu" - Tennis fans react to Williams-Raducanu 1R draw at the Cincinnati Masters

Emma Raducanu (L) and Serena Williams (R)
Emma Raducanu (L) and Serena Williams (R)
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Parag Jain

Emma Raducanu might have just been granted her biggest wish — to play against her idol Serena Williams at least once. The draw for the Western & Southern Open, also known as the Cincinnati Masters, has been released with the 40-year-old Williams set to square off against 19-year-old Raducanu in the first round.

Raducanu has often lauded the American legend for her achievements and longevity. While the Brit faced a first-round exit at the ongoing Canadian Open, Williams lost in the second.

Williams announced her decision to hang up her racquet earlier this week. The upcoming US Open could be the last time fans get to see the 23-time Grand Slam champion in action.

Whoever wins between Williams and Raducanu will go on to face either Victoria Azarenka or Kaia Kanepi.

As soon as the draw was released, tennis fans took to social media to express their excitement about watching the two Grand Slam winners from different generations in action.

"Emma Raducanu was born in 2002 (on Nov. 13). At that time, Serena Williams had won 210 matches (0.826 win rate), was world #1, had won 19 WTA titles, 4 of which were GS, and had defeated players like Graf, Hingis, Venus, Clijsters, Henin. Next week, they will play each other," a fan tweeted.
Emma Raducanu was born in 2002 (on Nov. 13). At that time, Serena Williams:- had won 210 matches (0.826 win rate)- was world #1- had won 19 WTA titles, 4 of which were GS- had defeated players like Graf, Hingis, Venus, Clijsters, HeninNext week, they will play each other. https://t.co/TMHH5B2DKX
"That’s a draw and a half right there. Don’t think Emma will really care whether she wins or lose; she’ll get to play Serena before she retired, and that’s super super cool. (Fun fact: by the time Emma Raducanu was born, Serena already had 11 Grand Slam titles.)," a user posted.
Fuuuuuuck that’s a draw and a half right there.Don’t think Emma will really care whether she wins or lose; she’ll get to play Serena before she retired, and that’s super super cool.(Fun fact: by the time Emma Raducanu was born, Serena already had 11 Grand Slam titles.) twitter.com/GBtennis/statu…
"This is the sort of match that will either be absolutely epic or horrifically awful. For real though, I imagine that Raducanu will be feeling immensely lucky to be able to play Serena right as the door was about to close for good on that opportunity," another fan tweeted.
This is the sort of match that will either be absolutely epic or horrifically awful. 😭 For real though, I imagine that Raducanu will be feeling immensely lucky to be able to play Serena right as the door was about to close for good on that opportunity. twitter.com/tennisontelly/…

Here are a few more reactions:

@tennisontelly Wow this is an actual joke. Brilliant for Emma to be able to say she played Serena Williams but my goodness what a bad draw. Two big draws & one will go out first round. As much as I love Emma, she has years left so I hope Serena wins. She deserves a deep run
Girl not Raducanu. Well is she gonna still be top 10? At least Serena can get one top 10 win before she retires. twitter.com/serenapower_/s…
Serena Williams playedSteffi Graf b. 1969 in 1999and she’s set to play Emma Raducanu b. 2002 in 2022Serena’s longevity is unmatched!👑
if raducanu beats serena i can see the headlines like some “passing the torch” shit 😭😭😭
@BenRothenberg Based on Radacanu’s recent play - she was mediocre in DC struggling vs lower ranked players — I like Serena’s chances.
If we could switch Raducanu for Sharapova and be all young again https://t.co/p527R5kxaq
LOLLLLL SERENA WILLIAMS VS EMMA RADUCANU THE TL WILL BE IN SHAMBLES LET ME TUNE IN 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭
Serena Williams vs Emma Raducanu:Two women combining for US Open titles in four different decades

Belinda Bencic beats Serena Williams in 2022 Canadian Open 2R

Serena Williams during her second-round Canadian Open match.
Serena Williams during her second-round Canadian Open match.

Serena Williams beat 57th-ranked Nuria Parrizas-Diaz of Spain in the first round of the National Bank Open in Montreal this week, which marked her first victory since the 2021 French Open 430 days ago.

The American injured her leg during her opening round match at last year's Wimbledon and was on the sidelines for a year. She made her singles return at Wimbledon this year but lost to Harmony Tan in the first round.

In the second round in Montreal, World No. 12 Belinda Bencic comfortably defeated the 23-time Major winner in straight sets. Williams, who was looking forward to winning a fourth title at the tournament, was broken thrice as she lost 6-2, 6-4.

The 40-year-old American will return to action at the WTA 1000 tournament in Cincinnati, which is scheduled to be played from August 15-21 at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Ohio.


Edited by Anirudh
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