Defending champion Emma Raducano lost in the first round of the US Open to France’s Alize Cornet. The French were too strong for Britain’s Radocano in 1 hour 42 minutes 6-3 6-3.
The Briton is the third champion to defend her title in Grand Slam history to lose in the first round of the subsequent tournament. The last time it happened was in 2017, when it happened with German Angelique Kerber.
“I am obviously very disappointed and very sad that I have to leave here again,” said the 19-year-old Briton, who won her first and only US Open title last year, after starting qualifying. “But in a way I’m also happy, because now I can continue on a clean slate.”
Raducanu indicated that she can continue to build her tennis career without pressure and expectations and that defeat therefore also gives her freedom. However, she will drop significantly in the rankings because she has many points to defend in New York and will likely fall outside the top 70. “I don’t know exactly what my ranking will be,” she said. “Maybe it’s too low, but I think it’s good to start over somewhere, a fresh start.”
Naomi Osaka was also eliminated in the first round of the US Open. The two-time winner of the American Grand Slam in New York lost in two sets to American Danielle Collins: 7-6 (5) 6-3.
The 28-year-old Collins reached the final of the Australian Open this year, losing the final fight to now retired Ashleigh Barty. Osaka, the former world number one, won the US Open in 2018 and 2020, but has had a rough start this year. In Toronto, the 24-year-old Japanese gave up due to back problems, and in Cincinnati she also lost in the first round.
Osaka started well and led 3-0 in the first set. However, Collins resisted and was the best in the tiebreak. In the second set, the American made it 5-3. Osaka had two more break points in the next match, but Collins scored her first match point.
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