Britain’s 18-year-old Emma Raducanu became the first qualifier to capture a Grand Slam title by defeating Canada’s 19-year-old Leylah Fernandez in the US Open women’s final today.
Raducanu, ranked 150th, was the first British woman in 44 years to win a Slam crown after dispatching 73rd-ranked left-hander Fernandez 6-4, 6-3. Not since Virginia Wade in 1977 at Wimbledon had a British woman taken a Slam singles title, with Raducanu the first Briton to claim the US Open crown since Wade in 1968.
Wade and British men’s tennis legend Tim Henman were among a sellout crowd of 23,700 that created an electric atmosphere at Arthur Ashe Stadium in the first-ever women’s Slam final between unseeded players.
The showdown of prodigy talents was the first all-teen Slam final since 17-year-old Serena Williams beat 18-year-old Martina Hingis for the 1999 US Open crown. Raducanu is the youngest US Open champion since Williams in 1999 and the first US Open women’s champion not to drop a set since Williams in 2014.
Raducanu had the fewest Slam starts of any women’s Slam winner, reaching the fourth round in July at Wimbledon in her only prior Slam appearance while Fernandez had won only four matches in six prior Slam appearances.
Fernandez, who turned 19 on Monday, had ousted defending champion Naomi Osaka, second-ranked Aryna Sabalenka, fifth seed Elina Svitolina and 3-time Slam winner Angelique Kerber in her epic run to the final.
Joe Salisbury completes US Open double
Great Britain’s Joe Salisbury completed a US Open double on Saturday as he lifted the Mixed Doubles trophy with American Desirae Krawczyk, just a day after winning the Men’s Doubles title with Rajeev Ram.
The second seeds produced a dominant performance, winning 82 per cent (28/34) of their first-serve points as they overcame Marcelo Arevalo and Giuliana Olmos 7-5, 6-2 to capture their second major title as a team.