Former world No. 1 Andy Murray has called on the media to give Emma Raducanu room to grow and develop, saying athletes “will make mistakes and say the wrong thing at times”
British veteran Andy Murray has urged the media to go easy on Emma Raducanu as the prospect hopes to make her second appearance at Wimbledon later this month.
Emma Raducanu, 19, is in a race to be fit for Wimbledon ‘s start on June 27 when she’ll target a happy return to SW19, where she made her Grand Slam debut last year. The teenager has been the subject of major media attention since she burst onto the scene with her U.S. Open title win in 2021.
And the more wizened Murray, 35, offered an empathetic plea to the press, urging onlookers to “just let her [Raducanu] be who she is.” Having had to deal with his own share of scrutiny down the years, the Scot is a learned figure when it comes to media management.
“We will make mistakes and say the wrong thing at times but just maybe don’t judge us too harshly when we do that and I’m sure that would help Emma a little bit,” said Murray. “Just let her be who she is, and you know, she might say some things that are a joke or that she maybe doesn’t mean or whatever.”
Emma Raducanu’s every movement and stroke was carefully analysed in the wake of her unexpected triumph at Flushing Meadows last year. The youngster has failed to advance past the second round of both major appearances since then, stumbling early in the Australian and French Opens.
Her early exit at Roland Garros shouldn’t be a surprise considering she only made her competitive clay court debut in April. Meanwhile, Raducanu’s approach to choosing her coach has also earned some criticism, having had three ‘permanent’ mentors in the past year or so.
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Andy Murray was 25 before he ended his search for a major crown at the 2012 U.S. Open, but compatriot Raducanu has a considerable head-start in comparison. The two-time Wimbledon champion suggested even journalists likely “made some mistakes and did some things they shouldn’t have done” when they were teens, calling on reporters to show compassion.
“I think there needs to be a level of trust and respect between the player and the media,” Murray added. “I also had problems early in my career where maybe certain things that I said got taken out of context or jokes that I might have made turned into big stories and big headlines where it turned things a bit sour and negative.”
Emma Raducanu recently told her fans she’s leaving “no stone unturned” in her efforts to be fit for Wimbledon. It’s expected she’ll miss the Eastbourne International warm-up tournament as a result of the side strain she suffered in the first round of the Nottingham Open.