Emma Raducanu has been advised by Billie Jean King on what to do when picking her next coach as she seeks her fifth new coach in 16 months. After her magical US Open triumph in September 2021, she stopped working with Andrew Richardson, who had stepped into the shoes of Nigel Sears.
The teen then hired the German coach Torben Beltz, with whom she worked until April this year, before turning to Dmitry Tursunov in the summer. But the British number one, who ended her season early by pulling out of the Billie Jean King Cup due to injury, is now searching for her fifth coach in less than two years after Tursunov opted not to extend their trial period into a long-term association last month.
King, a legend in the game, has suggested Raducanu hire a psychotherapist to work with people who have no agenda. “Now I think that she needs to have space and time and talk to people she trusts,” the tennis legend said in an interview with Reuters.
“I would hope she has a psychotherapist, I think they’re very helpful in hearing yourself. I’ve been going forever. It really helped my life.” The 73-year-old King also advised the “bright” and “level-headed” Raducanu to only work with people she can rely on.
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“I hope she gets people she can trust, who have no agenda. She needs to get away from people who have agendas, like ‘I wanna coach you, I wanna do this’ forget that,” the American added. “She needs to be herself and she’s very bright, actually very level-headed. I’m really impressed with her as a human being.”
Reports suggested Raducanu wanted to continue working with Tursanov, but he decided to quit after claiming he saw “some red flags that just couldn’t be ignored.” Soon after parting ways with the Bromley local, the Russian became the full-time coach of Olympic champion Belinda Bencic, which some believed was the reason why he stopped with with Raducanu.
“I was walking away from Emma regardless of whether there was another [player] available or not,” he told Tennis Majors. “We didn’t agree on the terms and there were some red flags that just couldn’t be ignored. So that’s why it’s a little frustrating to read things like that… I wasn’t hopping from one player to another, I wouldn’t do that.”
He added: “Our trial period was over at the US Open but I stuck around, trying to see if there was going to be a way to impress the team (he laughs). I really wanted to make it work.”
Despite ending his partnership with Raducanu, Tursanov had nothing but praise for the grand slam champion. “First of all, she’s absolutely great, she’s a hard worker and she doesn’t think or act like she’s a superstar,” he said.
“She is hungry to improve and is obsessed with tennis. I think it’s quite a rare combination. So I really loved working with her, and I really wanted to make it work. It was a very difficult decision for me to walk away from a player that I like and respect.”