Emma Raducanu woes continue as Brit loses Miami Open debut to Katerina Siniakova


Emma Raducanu lost her first match at the Miami Open from a set up to continue her recent run of early losses. The match looked to be virtually over early in the first set when her opponent Katerina Siniakova struggled physically and needed physio treatment multiple times but managed to come back from a break down twice in the final set to close out a 3-6 6-4 7-5 win in two hours and 56 minutes.

Raducanu was making her Miami Open debut, still experiencing her first full year on the pro tour after shooting up the rankings when she won the US Open as the 150th-ranked qualifier in September. The world No 13 is the 11th seed this week and received a bye to the second round, where she faced Katerina Siniakova.

The 19-year-old walked onto court with her left knee taped, having picked up an injury in Mexico last month. She was pushed to deuce in her opening service game but managed to hold on and threatened the doubles No 1’s serve as she forced seven break points but was unable to capitalise on any as Siniakova held, with the pair needing 16 minutes to get to 1-1.

But Raducanu then won eight points in a row to find herself 3-1 up with a break as the 25-year-old shouted in frustration and requested the physio for the next changeover. Siniakova was in tears as the physio arrived to the court with the Czech 1-4 down, as she received a medical time-out for what appeared to be a rib injury – the same issue Rafael Nadal picked up in Indian Wells that has forced him out for four to six weeks.

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The singles world No 53 continued playing and managed to save two break points before holding for 4-2, then broke Raducanu at the first time of asking in the following game as the physio returned to court to continue treating her at the change of ends. The Bromley teenager managed to break straight back to regain her lead as Siniakova fell onto the court and shook her head, holding back tears when she stood back up.

The 25-year-old became increasingly frustrated, throwing her racket on the court when Raducanu went 15-0 up as she served for the set. The 11th seed closed out the opener 6-3 after an hour as both players retreated to their benches, and Raducanu’s momentum continued into the second set as she broke in the first game. The trainer was back out for Siniakova once again as the pair sat down with the teenager 2-1 up.

Siniakova went on to break back and level things at 3-3 and managed to save a crucial break point at 4-4, which would have seen the young Brit have the chance to serve for the match. It was Raducanu’s turn to save two crucial break points and set points on her serve at 4-5, the second with an 83mph forehand winner. But a lucky let cord gave the top-ranked doubles player her third set point and Raducanu netted the ball to hand Siniakova the set.

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Raducanu again broke in the first game of the third set but the world No 53 came firing back once more to level things at 2-2. The 19-year-old managed to bring herself within a game of the match and even served for it at 5-4 after clinching another break but Siniakova broke again to keep the match alive.

This time Raducanu was forced to serve to stay in the match at 5-6 and looked to be struggling in the Miami heat and humidity, and Siniakova nabbed one more break to score a comeback win 3-6 6-4 7-5.

She will face the winner of a clash between Daria Saville and lucky loser Harmony Tan, after Simona Halep was forced to withdraw with a tear in her thigh, picked up during her Indian Wells semi-final against Iga Swiatek.


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