Emma Raducanu refuses to commit to representing Great Britain at Billie Jean King Cup | Tennis News

Emma Raducanu refuses to commit to representing Great Britain at Billie Jean King Cup | Tennis News

Emma Raducanu has cast doubt on her availability for Great Britain’s Billie Jean King Cup tie against France in April.

The former US Open champion has made only one senior appearance for her country, in a tie against the Czech Republic in 2022, missing the finals event later that year, last April’s defeat by France and November’s victory over Sweden because of her wrist problems.

GB captain Anne Keothavong was also unimpressed by Raducanu claiming she did not know when last year’s France tie was when asked about her possible participation.

Raducanu began her campaign in Melbourne with an impressive 6-3 6-2 win over American Shelby Rogers

There is no doubt that a fit Raducanu would strengthen Keothavong’s options for the France rematch on April 12-13, but the 21-year-old was cautious when asked whether the competition is a priority for her.

She said: “Of course I always love representing my country but, that being said, because of the amount of niggles and the rehab process, I think whatever suits my schedule and my fitness the best is going to have to take priority, especially this year.

“For example, if there’s a change in surface straightaway, too close in succession, I think I’d have to evaluate what I do. The most sensible thing for me is staying healthy.

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Raducanu said ahead of her comeback from injury that she is a better tennis player than before she had her lengthy break from the sport

“That’s the priority for the year. I can’t say either way. But my intention is good, I want to play.”

The tie will be played on indoor clay, which is the same surface as the following week’s tournament in Stuttgart, owned by sponsor Porsche, that she has already committed to.

Raducanu had more physical problems in her second-round loss at the Australian Open to Wang Yafan on Thursday, but it was an unfortunately-timed stomach bug rather than any injury worry.

The 21-year-old was able to finish what was a long and physical match, and leaves Australia encouraged by the early stages of her comeback following operations on both wrists and one ankle last spring.

“I’m very positive, very happy with how my body is,” she said. “I think the wrist in particular was something that I struggled with in coming back because I just had a setback for a few months, so I couldn’t play until late November again really.

“Now I feel good. Ankle feels good. I think, if I keep my work consistent, I have a good shot. This is obviously only my first trip back. I think that tidying up some of the areas, tidying up a bit of technique and things, also just getting used to playing matches outdoors, as well, because the conditions were very windy.

Emma Raducanu matches her previous runs at the Australian Open of losing in the second round
Can Raducanu stay injury free in 2024?

“I think she [Wang] handled it a lot better, the wind. She junk-balled me. She moon-balled me. She gave me a lot of these scrappy little shots, but it worked. I need to spend more time on tour, spend more time training, and putting good weeks together.”

Raducanu is next expected to play at the Abu Dhabi Open, beginning on February 5, where she has been given a wild card.

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