No pressure, Emma Raducanu ready to have a swing at Australian Open

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Britain's Emma Raducanu during a practice in the lead-up to the 2022 Australian Open.

FILE PHOTO: Britain’s Emma Raducanu during a practice in the lead-up to the 2022 Australian Open. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

MELBOURNE— Emma Raducanu has struggled to live up to sky-high expectations since winning her maiden Grand Slam at Flushing Meadows last year but the Briton says she is not worried about her poor form and will play without pressure at the Australian Open.

Raducanu, who faces American Sloane Stephens in the first round at Melbourne Park, became the first qualifier to win a Grand Slam in the Open era when she defeated Leylah Fernandez in New York last September.

But she struggled to get close to that form in subsequent tournaments with a series of early exits prompting criticism, while testing positive for COVID-19 at Christmas also impacted her preparations for the new season.

“I feel, because of the last few months I’ve had, maybe I haven’t played as much…

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