Emma Raducanu will MISS Billie Jean King Cup clash with France next month as she manages wrist soreness – leaving Great Britain without a top 100 singles player to choose from
- Emma Raducanu to miss Great Britain’s meeting with France next month
- Raducanu’s wrist soreness will once again prevent her from being available
- It’s the third time less than six months she hasn’t been able to play for Team GB
The growing sense of Emma Raducanu becoming semi-detached from the wider British game was compounded when she declared herself unavailable for next month’s Billie Jean King Cup tie against France.
It will be the third time in less than six months that the GB number one will be absent from team competition, after she missed November’s finals in Glasgow and January’s United Cup event in Australia.
As with November, the reason cited for her absence from the World Group qualifier match against France in Coventry on April 14-15 is the management of her ongoing problems with sore wrists.
However, it will not go unnoticed that she still expects to fulfil her commitment to play in WTA event in Stuttgart the following week, which is sponsored by Porsche, one of the companies she endorses.
It would involve a quick switch from playing on a hard court in Coventry to the unusual surface of indoor clay being used in Germany.
Emma Raducanu will play not part of Great Britain’s clash with France down to wrist soreness
This will be the third time in less than six months that Raducanu has been unavailable
Raducanu did not help herself with her flippant reply during Indian Wells – where her wrists did not stop her chalking up impressive wins against two top 25 players – when she claimed that she did not even know when the BJK Cup was due to take place.
That was especially awkward as Captain Anne Keothavong had flown all the way to California to assess her team options, which now turn out not to involve being able to pick her best singles player, and the only one currently in the top 100.
It will inevitably enhance the perception that satisfying her many sponsors is clashing with other commitments, such as repaying the help that the Lawn Tennis Association (responsible for fielding national teams) has always given her.
Raducanu’s representatives were keen to stress that, in an ideal world, she would have wanted to turn out in national colours.
It is fair to say that she is not the first to be conflicted between turning out in national colours and trying to curate their personal ranking, as she needs to do.
Among the wider factors in play are the failure of the game’s disparate governing bodies to agree on better dates and structure for team competitions, and also to come up with a formula which rewards such events with ranking points.
Captain Anne Keothavong hasn’t got a player in the top 100 singles ranking to choose from
Keothavong has a cluster of players below a hundred to choose from, and will be hoping that Harriet Dart is able to reproduce her outstanding form of Glasgow, of which there has been no sign this season so far.
She is selected along with Katie Boulter and Heather Watson along with doubles specialists Olivia Nicholls and Lissey Barnett, the line up who secured a surprise semi-final slot in Glasgow. Similarly ranked singles players Jodie Burrage and Katie Swan have been overlooked.
There may have been a slightly pointed element to Keothavong’s selection statement when she said:
‘I’m pleased to name the same team as the one we had four months ago in Glasgow where we gelled so well and the team spirit was electric. Katie and Heather have a proven track record in this competition and are enthusiastic as ever to be part of this team. While Emma is unavailable for this tie we look forward to seeing her back on the team in the near future.’