Emma Raducanu opts out of Roland Garros Qualifying hours before draw

Sunday, 19 May 2024 at 13:47
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In perhaps a bit of a bold move, Emma Raducanu has decided against playing in Roland Garros qualifying which will begin on Monday with the former US Open champion withdrawing mere hours before the draw is set to take place.
In a similar move to the Rome Open where she was confirmed to play until the day before, Raducanu either will not play the French Open at this point or is seemingly assured that enough withdrawals have taken place over the last 24 hours to guarantee a main draw spot.
The Brit is currently three spots away from the main draw with Sara Errani and Arina Rodionova currently ahead of her in the reckoning. But with doubts on some players including Jessica Pegula for instance, she could yet benefit and get straight into the main draw.
But it is a bit of a puzzling move that Raducanu is going for an all or nothing approach again. Also she withdrew late from Internationaux de Strasbourg in a move to play qualifying. Only not to play either. So she will either play the French Open next week if enough withdrawals or be sitting out until the grass court season.
This after she has already made it to Paris and has been practicing over the past week on the courts of the French Open seemingly all set to play qualifying. But it will likely be set in due course what the reasoning is behind this move.
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Emma Raducanu will likely cop criticism after deciding against trying to play Roland Garros.
She has not played since the Madrid Open last month which saw her lose crushingly to Maria Lourdes Carle after really good clay court form up until that point. She had starred at Billie Jean King Cup as well as Stuttgart, but Madrid went down like a lead balloon. In a similar move to Roland Garros, Rome denied her any semblance of a wildcard and instead handed them to Italian players. So she hasn't played since with no desire seemingly to play lower level.
For Raducanu though, she has also been removed from the website of Roland Garros in the players section. This could likely spell the Brit deciding to wait until the grass court season in order to next play. She will likely have a plethora of wildcards at her disposal for those tournaments and could feasibly start in Nottingham for instance or even in the Netherlands.
She also seemingly wasn't training on clay by reports from Stuart Fraser with Raducanu supposedly spending her time on hard courts in London. An odd way to prepare for a clay court major. Perhaps too a sign that she wasn't going to attempt to play after the initial wildcard snub.

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