French Open: Tennis legend John McEnroe criticizes Emma Raducanu’s decision

John McEnroe believes Grand Slam fame has'overwhelmed' Emma Raducanu

John McEnroe believes Grand Slam fame has ‘overwhelmed’ Emma Raducanu (Images: Getty)

John McEnroe believes Emma Raducanu was “overwhelmed” by her remarkable Grand Slam win and slammed the “incredible” decision to change coaches following her departure from the French Open.

Raducanu became the first qualifier in history to win a Major, ending Britain’s 44-year wait for a women’s singles Grand Slam champion at the US Open last year.

Since her fairytale run in New York, Raducanu has suffered second-round defeats at back-to-back Grand Slams, with the 19-year-old struggling to repeat the exploits that saw her triumph at Flushing Meadows.

The British number one parted ways with Andrew Richardson after their US Open win and then did without Torben Beltz ahead of the clay court season.

American tennis legend McEnroe, who won seven Grand Slams, says the coaches’ “revolving door” has hampered Raducanu’s development.

The 63-year-old told Eurosport: “Honestly if I won the US Open after qualifying I wouldn’t change my coach at least for next year so I don’t understand this move.

“Obviously her parents are involved and they know more than I do. But I just don’t think that idea of ​​a revolving door of coaches is good for a player, let alone a player at this stage in her career.

Raducanu had a fairytale run at last year's US Open

Raducanu enjoyed a fairytale run at the US Open last year (Image: Getty)

“We’ll have to wait and hopefully she finds someone to stay with for a while. She’s changed coaches, three, four, five times, which is incredible for someone who just won a major.

McEnroe who was Slams Raducanu after withdrawing from her fourth-round match at Wimbledon last year, also believes the Brit is struggling to cope with the ‘expectation’ of being a big winner.

“We have to keep a little perspective here,” he added. “Last year at Wimbledon she couldn’t finish a match because of stress and it got to be too much.

“Then she came out and did something that no one has ever done – man or woman – in 150 years of tennis, coming out of qualifiers and winning.

Britain's Emma Raducanu returns the ball to Belarus' Aliaksandra Sasnovich during their women's singles match on day four of the Roland-Garros Open tennis tournament at Suzanne-Lenglen court in Paris May 25, 2022. (Photo by Thomas SAMSON/AFP) (Photo by THOMAS SAMSON/AFP via Getty Images)

Raducanu has failed to reach the third round in the last two Grand Slams (Image: AFP)

“Suddenly she has this pressure, this expectation, which has also become a bit overwhelming.

“I think movement is an issue for her, obviously experience, she’s very young. She has put herself in a difficult position because a lot is expected of her and we are not sure if she is comfortable with the people around her yet. Hopefully she’ll find that in the next year or two.’

Raducanu faced Aliaksandra Sasnovich of Belarus in the second round of the French Open won the first set 6-3 before winning just two more games and being eliminated.

However, she was keen to take the positive results of her clay court campaign with her, telling reporters, “I’m very happy with the progress I’m making.

“I feel like I play pretty good tennis and I’m definitely working on the practice court. Certain things I work on on the practice site that pay off don’t show up right away.

“There is a small time lag between actual results in a live situation. I’m definitely going there.’

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tennis French Open: Tennis legend John McEnroe criticizes Emma Raducanu's decision

Nate Jones

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