Tennis

Emma Raducanu was ‘blocked out’ of Instagram account: ‘They thought I was a robot’

Emma Raducanu was 'blocked out' of Instagram account

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The 18-year-old British tennis star will tonight seek to write her name into the history books at the final of the US Open in New York. Her spectacular rise to the top of the tennis world has astounded pundits at Flushing Meadows. Raducanu’s incredible run in New York follows up her impressive debut Wimbledon campaign earlier this year. After a blistering start at SW19, the young Brit, who grew up in Bromley, was forced to pull out of the competition in the last 16 due to “breathing difficulties”.

The following day the star discussed her championships – which she entered as a wildcard into the main draw – with BBC Sport’s Sue Barker in July.

Raducanu said she was “so grateful” for those who cheered her on at Wimbledon and for the positive messages she had received on social media.

Sue said to her: “You had 2,000 Instagram followers when you started. How many have you got now?”

The tennis star replied: “I’m not sure, it’s funny because my Instagram actually blocked me out.

“I think they thought I was a robot or something, so we’re trying to fix that right now.”

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Sue then asked the young Brit about how she enjoyed having a presence on social media.

Raducanu said: “This week we’ve done a great job, me and my team. I haven’t spent that much time on my phone. I haven’t really checked any of the news.

“So, we’ve just been in our bubble, doing our own thing, focusing on the process and doing everything that we can that’s in our power and in our control to get myself ready for the match ahead.”

Sue also referenced the England football shirt the star was wearing and asked where she would be watching her team’s Euros clash with Denmark the following day.

Raducanu replied that she would “kick back at home” and watch the game there after a “busy two weeks”.

At the time of the interview Raducanu had an impressive 255,000 followers on Instagram.

However, since her US Open success, her following on the picture-sharing platform has shot up to 629,000.

Amazingly the young Brit is still yet to drop a set at the US competition, which she entered as a qualifier.

Raducanu put on her latest masterclass yesterday as she breezed past Maria Sakkari, the Greek 17th seed.

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Her 6-1, 6-4 victory came at the Arthur Ashe Stadium where she will now take on Leylah Fernandez, who is herself just 19, in the final tonight.

The pair’s showdown is already historic in that it features Raducanu, the first qualifier – male or female – to reach a Grand Slam final in the Open era.

She is also the first British woman to reach a Grand Slam final in almost half a century.

That feat was last achieved by Virginia Wade, who was victorious in the Wimbledon final in 1977.

Wade was in the Arthur Ashe Stadium yesterday to watch her countrywoman book her place in the final.

In her post-match interview Raducanu said: “Honestly, the time here in New York has gone so fast.

“I’ve just been taking care of each day and, before you know it, I’m in the final and I can’t believe it.”

The women’s US Open final will be played tonight at 9pm UK time and shown exclusively on Amazon Prime Video.
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