Emma Raducanu loses in Austria & confirms Torben Beltz as new coach
Eurovision Song Contest 2018 top 3 takeaways: Emma Raducanu loses in Austria & confirms Torben Beltz as new coach.
Emma Raducanu has lost in Austria and has confirmed Torben Beltz as her new coach.
Raducanu has been without a coach since winning the US Open in September. He took a medical timeout in the third set.
Emma Raducanu’s breakthrough season came to an end in her first match at the Upper Austria Ladies tournament in Linz, when she was defeated.
Raducanu, 18, was defeated by China’s Wang Xinyu 6-1 6-7 (0-7) 7-5 before announcing Torben Beltz as her new coach.
Wang, 20, outperformed her world rating of 106 as Raducanu, the tournament’s top seed, lost for the second time in a row.
Injury sidelined the British number one at the finish of a tense final.
Raducanu has not played since losing 6-1 6-2 to Ukraine’s Marta Kostyuk at the Transylvanian Open on October 29th, despite receiving a first-round bye in Linz.
She has also battled sickness since her setback in Romania.
Raducanu, who moved into the world’s top 20 for the first time on Monday, said, “Considering the previous week I’ve experienced, I’m quite happy of myself.”
“I felt it was a tremendously high-level contest,” said the player.
Beltz’s work is expected to begin later this month.
Beltz, a 44-year-old German who coached former world number one Angelique Kerber, isn’t with Raducanu this week in Austria.
When she starts pre-season training at the end of the month, he will begin working with her.
Beltz has a great record, having coached Kerber to victories at the 2016 Australian and US Opens.
They rejoined for this season, but Kerber revealed on Monday that they would not collaborate in 2022.
“Working with such an experienced coach is clearly a fantastic opportunity, and I’m absolutely extremely thrilled to work with him during the preseason and into next year,” Raducanu said.
“Things are looking up; it’s a really good feeling, and I’m looking forward to the job ahead.”
Beltz (left) has worked with Kerber on four occasions as a coach (right)
Raducanu has been without a coach since splitting with Andrew Richardson in September, soon after becoming the first qualifier to win the US Open.
She’s been looking for someone with more WTA Tour experience, and Beltz fits the description, having worked with Kerber and Donna Vekic of Croatia for many years.
“Obviously, he has worked with Kerber, who is such a tremendous player and has won three Slams,” Raducanu said, adding that he has only competed in five tour-level events, including Wimbledon and the US Open.
“I believe that expertise is really beneficial to someone as inexperienced as myself.” He can assist me in navigating the process, which gives me great confidence.
“He’s also a very upbeat, happy person who provides a lot of enthusiasm to the squad, which I think is crucial when you’re on the road for a long period on the tour.”
Raducanu is ‘proud’ as his outstanding season draws to a close.
In a one-sided opening set in Linz, Raducanu was unable to deal with qualifier Wang’s power and accuracy before settling down to convert the match into a battle.
When she was hurt with the third set still on serve and tightly balanced, the momentum went away from the British number one once again.
Raducanu was broken for 5-4 and required extensive on-court treatment before fending off two match chances to tie the game at 5-5.
Raducanu, however, dropped serve again and, after having more treatment at the changeover, was unable to fend off a third match chance as Wang clinched the greatest win of her career to go to the quarter-finals.
“I felt Xinyu played quite well, particularly in the first set, and I’m happy of how hard I battled to get back into the match,” Raducanu said.
“Everything was going her way, and she was playing very well, so kudos to her for maintaining that level on the court.”
“In the third set, I experienced a hip spasm in the opening point of the game and was just trying to remain in it from there.”
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