Emma Raducanu began the year ranked No. 345 in the world.
When the U.S. Open began, she was ranked 150th.
Raducanu and fellow teenage sensation Leylah Annie Fernandez captured the attention of the tennis world — and the sports world at large —during the past two weeks as they made a joint run to the U.S. Open final. On Saturday, Raducanu topped Fernandez, 6-4, 6-3, for her 10th straight victory without dropping a set, including three in qualifying.
Raducanu took home $2.5 million with the title, and Fernandez $1.25 million.
Fernandez is now ranked No. 28 in the world after entering the Open at No. 77.
After winning the title, there will be huge expectations for Raducanu going forward, but the next Grand Slam is not until the Australian Open in January. So for now, she can enjoy some much-needed time off from tennis.
“I’m not even thinking about, like, when I’m going home,” she said Saturday. “I have no idea when I’m going home. I have no idea what I’m doing tomorrow. I’m just really trying to embrace the moment, really take it all in.
“I definitely think it’s the time to just switch off from any future thoughts or any plans, any schedule. I’ve got absolutely no clue. Right now, no care in the world, I’m just loving life.”
Both young women showed remarkable poise throughout the fortnight, and Fernandez, who was attempting to become the second Canadian in three years to win the title (Bianca Andreescu), drew great praise for honoring New York City after playing on the 20th anniversary of 9/11.
“I know on this day it was especially hard for New York and everyone around the United States,” she said on court. “I just want to say that I hope I can be as strong and as resilient as New York has been the past 20 years. Thank you for having my back and I hope to see you next year.”
As part of her newfound fame, Fernandez appeared Monday on the Today show where the hosts said they were looking forward to watching her make the finals again in 2022.