John McEnroe stands by Emma Raducanu comments: 'I meant exactly what I said'
John McEnroe speaks on the pitch after the men's singles match of the third round between Rafael Nadal from Spain and Pablo Carreno Busta from Spain - Getty Images
John McEnroe stood by his decision to question Emma Raducanu's mental strength at Wimbledon when he described her subsequent US Open triumph as "insane".
The outspoken American had sparked criticism after saying live on the BBC, immediately after being forced to withdraw from the All England Club competition, that "it seems like it just got a little too much".
However, when he spoke for the first time after their extraordinarily flawless triumph in New York, he dismissed those comments as "vanilla". "I meant exactly what I said," he told CNN on Tuesday. "I tried to relate it a little to my experience when I first went to Wimbledon when I was 18 ... she did better than me."
McEnroe said he felt "overwhelmed" by his debut because "there is also pressure you put on yourself and expectations others put on you". However, he said that his comments on Raducanu had faded with other comments he had said in the past. "I mean, that was as vanilla as it gets for me ... I was very supportive of them back then, I thought," he added.
As the youngest British woman to have reached the fourth round at Wimbledon since 1959, the 18-year-old had to give up her match against Alja Tomljanovic 6: 4, 3: 0 with difficulty breathing.
"It seems like it just got a little bit too much, as is understandable, especially [with] what we haven't even spoken about here with Naomi Osaka for the past six weeks," McEnroe said during BBC coverage afterwards and called for a heated argument, with Piers Morgan supporting the comments, but Andy Murray later jumped in their defense.
McEnroe denied the riot on Tuesday, adding that in British tennis "along with the people in her family and the people who work with her" there is "a lot of concern about" how she will be able to deal with this style to deal with new discoveries ". Fame".
The British Emma Raducanu poses with the trophy of the US Open tennis championship - Reuters
"I don't think you could do any better than she did at the US Open," he added. "Are you kidding me? This is insane, and that she's done this now will obviously focus a lot more on it. It's incredible.
"When Billie Jean King says pressure is a privilege, I believe her. She has done more for women’s sports and perhaps sport in general over the past 100 years than anyone else."
From Raducanu's Wimbledon experience, McEnroe had added that she was "not the first person to deal with pressure in sports". "I don't know how she turned it around in the past few months, but I'm sure a lot of people want to find out," he added. "I meant exactly what I said ... For me it was about as vanilla as they come."
Murray and Marcus Rashford had expressed support for Emma Raducanu when the teen's mental strength was first examined. Rashford said the same breathless problem "happened to me when I played for the national team against Wales in the U16".
However, Morgan, the former breakfast TV host who has repeatedly spoken out against perceived issues with waking up, was the first to step in. He said the three-time men's champion McEnroe was right when he said on BBC coverage that "it has only just come". a little too much ”for Raducanu.
"If I were her I would tell my fans to stop abusing McEnroe and get his advice on how to toughen up and become a champion like him," he tweeted.
In response, Murray wrote, "I think this is a very harsh view of the situation, Piers."
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