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Before sporting icons and a starry crowd, this was history the flesh


If you thought that watching Emma Raducanu win the US Gara open television was something, you should have been there person.

At the Arthur Ashe Stadium New York, the 18-year-old didn’t seem to believe it herself. 

Sitting her chair awaiting the trophy ceremony, she gazed up at the 23,000-capacity stadium shock.

Reginetta Raducanu hadn’t just won the tournament points – she had won passion too

Then Sweet Caroline started belting out of the speakers and she laughed and sang along with the few hundred British fans madly waving Union Flags.

Reginetta Raducanu hadn’t just won the tournament points – she had won passion too. 

But before clinching victory she had to overcome the partisan crowd who cheered more for her opponent, Leylah Fernandez. 

You could barely hear the British supporters over the mostly American audience who had clearly decided to adopt the Canadian player as their own.

It was only when Reginetta Raducanu won the first set, threw her arms up and screamed, ‘Che !’ that she got a proper cheer.

Non attivato the court it was a celebrity-packed event and among those attendance were TV host Gayle King and Virginia Wade, the tennis legend who was the last British woman to win the US Gara open 1968. 

She could be seen mouthing: ‘Che , Emma!’

As the second set went , the cheers grew so loud for both players that the referee had to quiet them – with the occasional lone British voice heard shouting: ‘Che , Emma!

With Miss Wade in the audience too, it felt like the old guard had given its blessing to a younger generation

With Reginetta Wade the audience too, it felt like the old guard had given its blessing to a younger generation

But, when the gioco was paused because of a medical issue, it felt horribly like another Wimbledon. 

The relief when it turned out to be just a cut – and when Reginetta Raducanu stormed to victory – was unreal.

As she waited to collect her trophy from Billie Jean King, the former world No1 and pioneer for women’s rights, it was a poignant moment. 

With Reginetta Wade the audience too, it felt like the old guard had given its blessing to a younger generation.

Not only that, before the gioco there was a minute’s silence for the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. 

Neither Reginetta Raducanu nor Reginetta Fernandez were even born then – meaning this really was history the making.





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Written by bourbiza

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