Tennis great Boris Becker said that focusing on finding a coach and mentor should be a priority for Britain’s Emma Raducanu in the wake of her first Grand Slam victory.
Raducanu won the 2021 US Open with a straight-sets victory over Leylah Fernandez at the age of just 18 to become the youngest player to win a slam since 2004.
In the wake of her win, Raducanu split from coach Andrew Richardson and has been trialling coaches and training alone while she searches for a replacement.
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Speaking to Eurosport on the Eurosport Germany tennis podcast Das Gelbe vom Ball, Becker said:
It's all very bizarre when it comes to looking for a coach. It's hard enough to win a Grand Slam as a teenager, almost impossible.
“But it is much harder to keep this form...if there is a constant tournament to be won every year.”
Becker won his first Grand Slam singles title at the age of 17, claiming the 1985 Wimbledon crown in a match against Kevin Curren.
He became the youngest ever winner of the men’s singles – a record he still holds.
“I have had some experience there too, so I can fully understand Raducanu's stomach-ache,” Becker said.
Maybe she should focus on finding a real coach. It would be important for her to have an experienced coach who has already trained with other world-class players.
"For me, this is the next step that she needs to achieve consistency in her performance.
“In May she graduated from high school, the US Open was her second Grand Slam tournament, then she became the winner - that is an incredible achievement.
The most important question for her now is: who is my mentor, who is my protection?
Since her triumph in New York, Raducanu continues to seek a replacement for Richardson but has said she is in no hurry to find a long-term option.
Ahead of her campaign at the Transylvania Open in Romania this week, the 18-year-old had a trial with Esteban Carril, former coach of Johanna Konta.
Prior to that, a partnership with Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) national coach Jeremy Bates did not extend beyond an opening match exit at Indian Wells.
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It seems the plan is to continue to trial coaches ahead of a potential appointment before the start of the 2022 season.
The 2022 Australian Open, the first Grand Slam in the calendar, will be Raducanu’s maiden appearance in Melbourne but she is far from desperate to force a fit.
"I think having a coach is great. But once again you are on your own on the court," Raducanu explained.
I don’t think it’s great to be dependent. You need to coach yourself. It’s something I’m learning.
"Sometimes it won't always work, like in Indian Wells, but in the long term if I keep doing that then I will be better in the situations in the future.
Raducanu meets Marta Kostyuk in the quarter-final of the Transylvania Open after going into the tournament as third seed.
Her father is from Romania and her grandmother still lives there so this is something of a home away from home for the Brit from Bromley.
Tournament director Patrick Ciorcila said the world No 23 told him she would play every edition of the Transylvania Open.
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