Mats Wilander has questioned Emma Raducanu’s reputation for axing coaches after a short period of time after Dmitry Tursunov walked away.
Emma Raducanu’s “red flags” have been discussed by Mats Wilander following the British No 1’s split with Dmitry Tursunov. It comes after the Russian himself confessed that there were some concerning signs that contributed to his decision to walk away from his partnership with Raducanu, leaving her without a coach once again.
Emma Raducanu recently split with her fourth coach in the space of 14 months after it was reported that Tursunov decided to walk away from the Brit, linking up with Olympic champion Belinda Bencic shortly after. The world No 76 had previously axed Torben Beltz, Andrew Richardson and Nigel Sears after short periods of time, earning herself something of a brutal reputation when it comes to her coaches.
Seven-time Major champion Wilander has now claimed that Raducanu’s inability to work with a coach over a longer period of time is something of a “red flag” after Tursunov himself admitted there were some warning signs that made him split with the 19-year-old. “I do not know what the red flags are when it comes to Emma Raducanu.” the former world No 1 told Eurosport.
“I mean, I guess a red flag would be that she hasn’t found a coach that she could be with for an extended period of time and you would’ve thought that she’d hang onto the coaching staff that she had when she won the US Open in 2021, and that didn’t last that long.”
But the retired pro said he didn’t want to start speculating about any of the reasons behind Raducanu’s short coaching relationships as he continued: “So yeah, I guess a red flag for me would only be that how come these relationships don’t last? And it’s very dangerous to speculate on anything except the facts.
“And the facts are that she has not been able to work closely or to work for extended periods of time with some of the greatest coaches in our game. That might be a red flag for me because I think, again, it’s that structure but it’s also that belief and you have to find the right fit, and it’s sort of a sporting romance you have with your coach and you have to find the right relationship.”
Wilander also gave Raducanu the benefit of the doubt as he explained the difficulty of finding the right coaching relationship as a player. “90 per cent of the time, people don’t realise you’re not talking about tennis,” he added.
“You’re talking about other things in life and you have to have a common interest in life and a common goal as human beings, and then of course there’s that short period of the time during the day where we are actually hitting tennis balls and then that trust has to be there. So I wouldn’t put too many red flags up in terms of her development as a player.”
The 58-year-old was also full of praise for the 2021 US Open champion’s game as he admitted the teenager had experienced an unprecedented rise after winning the title as a qualifier last year, putting unseen amounts of pressure on her. “She’s driven, she’s an unbelievably solid player everywhere, she’s got a good spirit about her,” Wilander said.
“And again, we have to realise that she’s very young and she was thrown into maybe the hottest bed that there is, which is the sporting bed in Great Britain, having Wimbledon as the flagship sporting event maybe in the whole country. So Emma Raducanu, the pressure has always been on her and she just needs a bit of time.”