She has become a household name overnight after dazzling us on the track with her historic win at the US Open.
Now Emma Raducanu is firmly on her way to becoming a global megastar – after waking up in New York yesterday and screaming for the world to hear what she has to say about her incredible, flawless win at such a young age.
And it looks like the 18-year-old is having a good time, serving up a string of TV interviews and Instagram posts with ease, humility, and (of course) that megawatt smile.
Since Saturday’s win, Emma has swapped hotels from the InterContinental — a place enough to host her for free, as arranged by the US Open — to the Peninsula on New York’s exclusive Fifth Avenue, three times more expensive and the residence of royalty. , presidents and movie stars.
Emma Raducanu is firmly on her way to becoming a global megastar – after waking up in New York yesterday and screaming for the world to hear what she has to say about her incredible, flawless win at such a young age
From here, she found herself at the center of a media blitz yesterday, appearing live on two breakfast shows within an intoxicating hour.
As if that wasn’t enough, the day would conclude with a performance at the Met Gala, a fashion extravaganza presided over by American Vogue editor – and tennis superfan – Anna Wintour. The glittering event was postponed from its usual May date due to the Covid-19 pandemic, meaning Emma could celebrate her success with a real Cinderella moment.
The newly minted millionaire (that phenomenal overall win earned her £1.8 million in prize money) would appear in a designer dress and share the red carpet with more established stars, including Lewis Hamilton and Venus Williams. The Bromley teen, who went from 2,000 Instagram followers in June to 1.6 million today, will have to get used to being A-list shamed.
Her NBC hosts couldn’t get over how fabulous she is in person after having her on their breakfast show, which is being shown across America. After interviewing her, Craig Melvin said, “She’s lovely.” Co-host Savannah Guthrie agreed: “I know. A star is born.’
Emma Raducanu plays in the final of the US Open that she won on Saturday evening
It was an early start for Emma. At 7am she and her team left The Peninsula. Coach Andrew Richardson, agent Chris Helliar and physio Will Herbert – who she calls “the mechanic” – talked Sunday night about the incredible win over 19-year-old Canadian Leylah Fernandez. They probably did this on the striking roof terrace of their hotel’s Salon de Ning – including Tim Henman.
“We had a really nice evening, you know, we just thought all night,” Emma said yesterday.
“It was a really cool moment because it’s been such a long journey for us and everything has happened so quickly. We arranged every day and before we knew it three weeks had passed, but we had to think and share a few stories and it was a fun night to have with everyone.’
As she left the hotel to get into a car with Helliar, fresh-faced Emma was wearing shorts and a £22 men’s Nike T-shirt featuring a cartoon of the Statue of Liberty holding a tennis racket.
And it looks like the 18-year-old is having a great time, serving up a string of TV interviews and Instagram posts with ease, humility, and (of course) that megawatt smile.
By 7:30 a.m., she had changed and was on live television from coast to coast on ABC’s Good Morning America, filmed at the network’s studio in Times Square.
The teen was wearing button-up jeans, believed to be a pair from the fashionable Mother brand, which cost around £300, along with a white cashmere cardigan and a £228 top set from sustainable clothing brand Reformation. Her white sneakers were from Nike, with whom she has a shoe and clothing sponsorship.
Despite looking so familiar to so many teens (a similar vest is on sale at Zara for £15.99), she upped her bling factor with a £11,000 gold link necklace from Tiffany, plus the £4,500 pearl and diamonds earrings from the jeweler she wore while playing on Saturday night.
Emma appears to have signed a deal to be a Tiffany ambassador. The company changed hands earlier this year and is now part of the giant luxury goods empire LVMH. The first assignment for the new management team is to grow the brand outside of America, especially in the Asian market.
Emma Raducanu proudly holds the US Open trophy after winning the final on Saturday night
Born in Canada to a Romanian father and a Chinese mother, Emma is “quite capable” in Mandarin and couldn’t be a better fit for Tiffany. She’s in star company – Beyonce and Jay-Z are also new ambassadors for the brand.
In her interview with ABC, Emma expressed her joy at the letter she received from the Queen – and told all about the mystery of her lost Apple earphones.
After winning Saturday night, she had told reporters that buying a new pair had become a running joke among her team. “For my first round qualifier, I lost my AirPods and ran through the locker room about three minutes before my call to find it, but I lost it.” Luckily she found them just before the semifinals.
She also said she was happy to impress her “tough” and “hard to please” parents Ian and Renee, who saw their only child’s match at the family home in Bromley because they couldn’t travel due to Covid restrictions. .
The teen was wearing button-up jeans, believed to be a pair from the fashionable Mother brand, which cost around £300, along with a white cashmere cardigan and a £228 top set from sustainable clothing brand Reformation.
“I think from an early age I was always raised with mental strength,” she said.
“My parents… were pretty strict with me when I was young, but I think it helps now on the biggest stages in the world.
“It was really nice talking to them after I won. They were so happy and proud of me… [they’re] my toughest critics and very, very hard to please, but yes, I have them with this one. They couldn’t resist.’
She added that she had increased her stamina and mental strength during the tournament and described her departure from Wimbledon with respiratory problems as “more of a physical problem”.
She concluded, “It’s almost natural selection, you know…if you don’t…” [adapt], you lose so it was really fun to be a part of. I am of course very happy with the week.’
At 7:40 a.m., Emma was on her way to another NBC interview, posing for a short video for Instagram along the way in front of a giant billboard featuring her face.
“Sightseeing in New York,” she wrote. ‘Never thought I’d see this. Coolest thing.’
At 7:44 a.m., she appeared on NBC’s breakfast show Today via Zoom. That program was also filmed in New York, at Rockefeller Center, but Emma’s tight schedule meant she didn’t have time to get there in person. She appeared instead from a small room nearby.
“Three weeks ago I didn’t think I would last the whole trip,” she told the hosts.
“I thought I would be home a week after qualifying. But I just did my best to take care of each day individually and to the best of my ability, and three weeks later the time flew by and I had the trophy in my hands at the end. But yes, it was the best time of my life.’
As for any jitters, she said, “I think there was a little bit of pre-match nerves in terms of something that just didn’t feel quite 100 percent, and I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. . It’s just a weird feeling. But I think that’s part of the build and stuff. As soon as I got out and just did what I’ve done 100 times before playing and just focusing on the point and the tactics and not trying to get caught up in the opportunity I felt completely normal and it was a great level to match .
“Leylah played incredible tennis and we literally threw everything at each other. I’m just very proud that I survived some difficult moments, especially towards the end.’
About the trophy she said: ‘It goes with me, by my side. I don’t check it in other luggage. I can’t believe I can take it home with me.’
After her busy morning there was some rest. Sources in her camp said she and Helliar took a car around New York to see some sights, followed by a leisurely lunch. The afternoon would be preparation for the Met Gala.
This year the event is aimed at a much younger audience. The celebrity hosts are all 25 and under, with a large number of Instagram and TikTok stars on the guest list. That list is also smaller this year, from 600 to just 450, due to Covid restrictions.
British Vogue editor-in-chief Dame Anna Wintour is the event’s honorary president and a huge tennis fan, who considers Roger Federer (who once posed with Emma on Instagram) as one of her close friends. She’s a regular face in the crowd at Wimbledon and the US Open – and yesterday speculation ran all over town that she had personally provoked Emma to attend.
Others to join them included Debbie Harry, Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian, while Rihanna hosted the official after-party. But as far as New York – indeed, the world – right now, Emma is a brighter star than all of them.
Additional coverage from Daniel Bates in New York