'Don't Listen To Critics': Billie Jean King Tells Emma Raducanu

'Don't Listen To Critics': Billie Jean King Tells Emma Raducanu

by Nurein Ahmed

British tennis star Emma Raducanu has received public support from 12-time Grand Slam singles champion Billie Jean King who says she needs to learn to block critics.

In 2021, Raducanu shocked the world by winning her first Grand Slam title as a qualifier without dropping a set in 10 matches - a feat that had never been achieved before in professional tennis across both tours. Raducanu has since spoken poignantly of that triumph, wishing it never happened.

Her whole life has since come crashing down at her. Raducanu has been through hell and back with a spate of injuries long enough to fit a shopping list. The former British number one has not won another WTA title and hasn't played since mid-April after undergoing surgery on both wrists and her ankle.

Billie Jean King, one of the trailblazers of women's tennis, spoke to Sky Sports and feels for Raducanu to an extent, but says the life of a professional athlete can be tough. Raducanu has come in for heavy criticism from fans and a tirade from unforgiving tabloids since her historic US Open win.

"I just know it's gotten tough for her, I just hope that she'll be alright because it's tough. If you want to be a professional athlete, it's tough."

"And you've got to learn not to listen to criticism, you got to learn all these things and that's why I say don't take anything personally because once you learn that, you're okay. And if people are bullying you on social media you've got to stop looking at it or get some way to finish up, it's really important."

Billie Jean King's advice to Emma Raducanu

While Raducanu won't be ready in time to be fit for the 2023 US Open, King noted that nobody can take away her mindboggling achievement in New York and backs her to return even stronger from her injury nightmare.

"As she gets older, no matter what happens to her life she'll always have this US Open title - always and forever. And the way she did it: Wow! It's amazing."


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