Teenage dream: Britain’s Raducanu becomes first qualifier to win Grand Slam with US Open title victory over Fernandez

Emma Raducanu completed one of the most astonishing stories in tennis history as the British teenager captured the US Open title with victory over Canada’s Leylah Fernandez in New York.

In an all-teenage final at Flushing Meadows, Raducanu ran out a straight-sets winner 6-4 6-3 to become the first British female Grand Slam singles champion in 44 years.

Appearing in just her second Grand Slam, the teenage star also becomes the first qualifier – male or female – to go all the way to the title at a major tournament in the Open Era. 

Raducanu and Fernandez, 19, had defied expectations to come this far in New York, having started the tournament unseeded.

Fernandez saw off defending champion Naomi Osaka, fifth seed Elina Svitolina and second seed Aryna Sabalenka on her way to the final.

Raducanu, meanwhile, had not dropped a single set on her route to Saturday's showdown – becoming the first star in the Open Era to emerge from qualifying and set up a shot at a Grand Slam title.

It was the Brit who continued that form to boss Saturday’s final at Arthur Ashe Stadium, also overcoming some late drama as she cut her leg while serving for the match.

Fernandez appeared angry as Raducanu rival called a medical time-out when the Canadian had break point and a chance to wrestle back the initiative, but the Brit recovered and saved another break point before seeing out the match – and the championship – with an ace.

As the records tumbled with her feat in New York, Raducanu also became the youngest Grand Slam queen since Russia's Maria Sharapova won Wimbledon as a 17-year-old back in 2004. 

That victory propelled Sharapova to global stardom – as well as a further four Grand Slam titles – and similar will now be expected from Raducanu after her sensational triumph. 

Given Raducanu's rise from an outsider to a Grand Slam queen, many hailed her New York fairytale as among the greatest stories that tennis – and perhaps even sport as a whole – has ever witnessed. 


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