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Emma Raducanu shines against Sanders in Stuttgart debut

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Emma Raducanu dropped just three games in her first-ever clay-court match in a Hologic WTA Tour event in the first round of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix.

Check the box: Emma Raducanu is off and running in her debut at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix.

The No.8 seed, playing her first clay-court Hologic WTA Tour tournament this week in Stuttgart, earned a 6-1, 6-2 win Tuesday over Australian Storm Sanders to reach the second round.

Raducanu just played her very first expert tennis matches on earth throughout the end of the week addressing Great Britain in the Billie Jean King Cup, where she went 1-1 with a triumph over Tereza Martincova and a misfortune to Marketa Vondrousova in her group’s 3-2 in general loss to the host Czechs in Prague.

Heavy foot blisters hampered Raducanu in a 6-1, 6-1 defeat to Vondrousova on Saturday, but she looked no worse for wear in a 70-minute victory against Sanders, improving her fledgling clay-court record as a professional to 2-1.

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Raducanu recounts: “I feel like there were many long deuce games and I’m very happy to have battled through against Storm,” Raducanu said on-court in victory. “She played two matches in qualifying and we played last year. She’s extremely tricky and I’m just really happy to have found a way through those long games and put on a good performance.”

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Raducanu fell into few of the traps that might befall an inexperienced clay-court player against Sanders, as she still managed more winners (17) than unforced errors (14) and landed a stunning 83% of her first serves. Nonetheless, she says, every day remains a learning process.

“The duration of the points, that’s something I need to work on as I spend more time on clay,” she added. “It will improve my craftiness and variety of shot, so I’m just looking forward to spending more time on this surface moving forward.”

Up next: Raducanu’s next challenge comes as Germany’s Tamara Korpatsch, a fortunate failure into the WTA 500 draw who, unexpectedly, lost to Sanders in the last round of qualifying.

The World No.118 came from a set down to beat Itay’s Camila Giorgi on Tuesday, 3-6, 7-6(2), 6-1, and Raducanu says she’s looking forward to playing a German “on her home turf.”

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