Raducanu ex-coach explains decision to cut ties over ‘red flags’

Russian-state TV delights in Emma Raducanu's new Russian coach

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Emma Raducanu’s former coach Dmitry Tursunov has opened up on his recent split from the British star, admitting there were ‘red flags’ he could not look past. Raducanu, 19, is on the lookout for her fifth coach in 16 months after Tursunov opted against extending an initial trial period into a longer partnership.

The pair began working together in the summer and she enjoyed some good form on the court, winning eight of her 15 matches, including a run to the semi-finals of the Korea Open. However, her US Open title defence came to an end with a first-round defeat.

Raducanu is believed to have wanted to continue working with the Russian coach but he opted to end their partnership. Tursunov has since linked up with Belinda Bencic, leading to suggestions he had been switching between sessions with the two players.

But the former tennis star has hit back and insisted: “I was walking away from Emma regardless of whether there was another player available or not. We didn’t agree on the terms and there were some red flags that just couldn’t be ignored. So that’s why it’s a little frustrating to read things like that… I wasn’t hopping from one player to another, I wouldn’t do that.

“With Emma, I walked away, yes. That was my choice. I could have stuck around, I could have agreed on everything that her team proposed. But, deep down, I felt like that wasn’t the right thing to do.  I felt like there were going to be problems later and I wanted to avoid them for my own peace of mind.”

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Tursunov did go on to hail Raducanu’s character on and off the tennis court – but admitted she would be a two-and-a-half year project. He added: “She’s absolutely great, she’s a hard worker and she doesn’t think or act like she’s a superstar. She is hungry to improve and is obsessed with tennis. So I really loved working with her, and I really wanted to make it work.”

Raducanu has already shown a willingness to change her coaches in such a short space of time but is thought to have wanted to extend her partnership with Tursunov, as she continues the search for her successor.

She stopped working with Andrew Richardson after her US Open win, having started out with Nigel Sears, and then hired Torben Beltz before she moved over to Tursunov. She has however added Andy Murray’s former fitness coach, Jez Green, to her team.

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