‘After the FIRST point she started screaming… she has a lot to learn’: Emma Raducanu’s first round opponent in Melbourne questions the teen’s on-court behaviour – and warns the US Open champion NOT to get used to success
Raducanu got the better of Stephens, the 2017 US Open champion, in three sets on Tuesday having only required 17 minutes to wrap up the first.
After being broken three times on her own serve in a frustrating second, the 19-year-old quickly regained momentum to dominate the third and record a 6-0, 2-6, 6-1 win.
Sloane Stephens has warned Emma Raducanu that she has ‘a lot to learn’ in tennis
Yet in her post-match press conference, Stephens appeared to question Raducanu’s on-court behaviour, before telling the youngster she must be prepared for plenty of ‘ups and downs’ in the sport.
‘Everyone saw after the first point she gave like a massive scream,’ Stephens said.
‘She played me, someone she’s ranking-wise supposed to beat. And, I mean, yeah, she won.’
The 28-year-old then added: ‘Because she is so young it’s definitely a long road, so there’s going to be a lot of ups and downs. I think she, yeah, has just a lot to learn.
Raducanu got the better of Stephens in their Australian Open first-round tie on Tuesday
Stephens appeared to question the 19-year-old’s on-court behaviour after the defeat
‘I was talking to someone in the locker room and I’m like, ‘We’ll be here when she comes down’.
‘Not Emma but just in general. It all is like a cycle, and I think learning how to deal with it early on is the best way to handle it. Just because there’s always a lot of ups and downs in tennis.’
Raducanu revealed after the victory that she was inspired by Andy Murray’s thrilling five-set win over Nikoloz Basilashvili earlier in the day.
The Brit, who will face Danka Kovinic in the second roun, said: ‘I was, actually [watching his match], because when I was in the third set, I thought Andy was up a set.
‘Then he got pushed to five. But he fought back so hard in the fifth set and took the decider.
‘So when I went to three [sets] I was also thinking “Actually, I can fight back and win the decider.” You know, fight like he did. So I was definitely inspired by him.’
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