Raducanu handed nightmare Miami Open draw with Brit set for return

Emma Raducanu receives MBE from King Charles in 2022

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Emma Raducanu has been handed a tough first round draw at the Miami Open, with the Brit set to take on fellow former US Open winner Bianca Andreescu.

Raducanu notably won the 2021 US Open, becoming the first ever qualifier to win a Grand Slam singles title. Andreescu, meanwhile, won the US Open in 2019 after defeating the legendary Serena Williams.

Both players were teenagers when they won the US Open and have faced each other once before in the first round of last year’s Italian Open. On that occasion, Andreescu progressed after Raducanu retired with a back injury.

At the time, Andreescu was leading 6-2 2-1. Speaking ahead of that match, the Canadian admitted it was a “weird coincidence” that they had both won the same Grand Slam title as teenagers.

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“I’ve thought about the parallels, but I don’t go crazy,” Andreescu said. “It’s just a really weird coincidence. I watched her win the US Open, and I was really happy for her because I won it basically around her age.

“Obviously, she was playing a Canadian [Leylah Fernandez], so that was really nice too. She’s a really great player, so I’m expecting a really good match. I remember saying, ‘I want to play her,’ and it looks like I got my wish.”

Both Raducanu and Andreescu last competed at Indian Wells earlier this month, getting knocked out of the tournament by world No. 1 Iga Swiatek. Following her loss to Swiatek, Raducanu insisted she can eventually become “one of the best athletes on the tour”.

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Despite struggling with illness and a wrist issue ahead of the tournament, Raducanu was able to win three straight matches for just the second time since her US Open win. “When I’m telling you I haven’t trained, I haven’t trained,” she admitted.

“Physically I feel like that’s going to be one of my biggest assets. My team has spoken about it. I think that I’m going to be one of the best athletes on the tour, and that’s going to be a big part of my game. I would say there is a very long way to go, but I’m definitely starting the right work now.”

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