Emma Raducanu's latest move has tennis fans guessing

Raducanu's 2024 comeback has been difficult
Clive Brunskill/GettyImages

2021 US Open champion Emma Raducanu is back on the WTA Tour after an injury-laden 2023; however, her latest move makes tennis fans wonder what is happening with her. Is she healthy, and what are her plans for the spring and summer tournaments?

Raducanu pulled out of the French Open qualifiers. She was among several high-profile players who did not receive French Open wildcards.

She could be playing the waiting game to see if enough players pull out of the tournament so she is automatically inserted into the draw. She is reportedly third in line to be inserted in the French Open draw so it is not out of the realm of possibility that three players will withdraw in the next couple of days. This would be consistent with how she handled the Australian Open in January, and the strategy worked for her to gain entry into the main draw where she lost in the Round of 64 to Coco Gauff.

Emma Raducanu's rough 2024 season

2024 has been difficult for her. She is currently ranked 212th and has only played 16 matches this year. She has a 9-7 record. Wildcards have been her way into the non-Grand Slam tournaments she has in Auckland, Abu Dhabi, Doha, Indian Wells, Stuttgart, and Madrid.

Her highest level of play was at the Billie Jean King Cup qualifier event between England and France in mid-April when she defeated Diane Parry and Caroline Garcia in consecutive three-set matches.

Next. French Open Wildcards. French Open wildcards get it right with Halep and wrong with Thiem. light

She made it to the Round of 16 at Stuttgart with two impressive straight-set wins over hometown hero Angelique Kerber and teenager Linda Noskova. She then pushed World No. 1 Iga Swiatek to a first-set tiebreaker in their Round of 16 match before losing in straight sets.

Expectations should be tempered for Raducanu on clay. Her lone tournament win on the WTA Tour was on the US Open hardcourts. Maybe Raducanu is hedging her bets in France hoping to sneak into the 'backdoor' of the tournament while preserving her body for the Wimbledon grass and summer hardcourt seasons where she anticipates better results.

Read more on Lob and Smash