Emma Raducanu is in a Grand Slam semi-final for the first time in her young career
Photo: Seth Wenig / AP
The 18-year-old Brit Emma Raducanu sensationally defeated Olympic champion Belinda Bencic from Switzerland in the quarter-finals of the US Open. After a few minutes of initial nervousness, Raducanu, who first attracted attention by reaching the round of 16 at the home Grand Slam in Wimbledon, played an almost flawless match. After only 1:22 hours, the number 150 in the world prevailed 6: 3, 6: 4 against Bencic, who was seeded at eleven.
Raducanu had never faced a more difficult task than Bencic in her young career: The Swiss, who was in twelfth position in the WTA world rankings, was Raducanu's first ever top 40 opponent.
With the gold medal in Tokyo, Bencic had recently underlined her form.
But the six-year-old favorite only appeared superior in the first minutes of the match, when she was able to win the first service game from Raducanu.
Hardly any mistake in the second sentence
But the agile Brit, who had fought her way into the main draw as a qualifier, quickly found her way back into the game. Two break chances used later, Raducanu had turned the sentence. And also in the second set Raducanu made her opponent desperate with her sovereign style of play, took the lead with a break and had not made an "Unforced Error" at the intermediate score of 4: 2, so he did not make any mistakes in the decisive moments.
Bencic hingegen erwischte keinen guten Tag. Beim Zwischenstand von 4:3 für Raducanu ging Bencic 30:0 in Führung, gab diese jedoch direkt wieder aus der Hand und schlug frustriert den Schläger auf den Boden. Raducanu brachte ihren Vorsprung ins Ziel und trifft im Halbfinale nun entweder auf Karolina Pliskova oder Maria Sakkari. Das zweite Halbfinale bestreiten Aryna Sabalenka und Leylah Fernandez, die auf ihrem ähnlich überraschenden Weg unter die letzten Vier unter anderem Angelique Kerber und Naomi Osaka ausschalteten.