Emma Raducanu vs Bianca Andreescu: A battle of kindred spirits at Miami Open

Rise, fall and rise: Emma Raducanu and Bianca Andreescu (Getty Images/Getty Images)
Rise, fall and rise: Emma Raducanu and Bianca Andreescu (Getty Images/Getty Images)

Immaterial of the result later today, Emma Raducanu has a kindred spirit in Bianca Andreescu.

Both were heralded as the next big thing in tennis, both by virtue of their US Open title successes as teenagers, Andreescu in 2019 and Raducanu two years later.

Since then, both have endured tumbles down the world rankings to the extent that Andreescu toyed with quitting tennis altogether.

Now, she finds herself on the verge of the world’s top 30 while Raducanu’s rebuild saw her climb five spots up to the world No72 after her impressive Indian Wells run.

The pair meet in the opening round of the Miami Open on Wednesday afternoon, a match-up which could yet become a regular feature on the WTA Tour if both can consistently recapture their teen glories.

For her part, Andreescu is under no illusion of what she will be facing from the first point of their contest. “She’s an aggressive player,” said the Canadian. “She likes to take control right from the start.”

Their previous match-up at last year’s Italian Open is far from a useful indicator, Raducanu pulling out of that in the second set with a back injury.

Wrist problems and illness looked set to curtail her Indian Wells ambitions but she recovered and appears to be reaping the benefits of a winter working with Andy Murray’s former strength and conditioning coach Jez Green.

Like Raducanu, Murray enjoyed a promising Indian Wells initially before coming undone against fellow Briton Jack Draper, who misses Miami after the injury he picked up last week.

Murray also begins his Miami campaign today against Dason Lajovic, with the potential prospect of a meeting against newly crowned world No1 in the third round should he progress.