Raducanu and Leicester fuel Boulter’s Wimbledon bid

Katie Boulter is taking inspiration from Leicester’s 2015/16 Premier League title victory and Emma Raducanu’s 2021 US Open win to fuel…


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Wimbledon 2022: Watch Katie Boulter come from a set down to beat Karolina Pliskova

Katie Boulter is taking inspiration from Leicester’s 2016 Premier League title victory and Emma Raducanu’s 2021 US Open win to fuel her Wimbledon run.

The 25-year-old takes on France’s Harmony Tan, who knocked out seven-time singles champion Serena Williams, at 11:00 BST for a place in the last 16.

“I hope I can take a leaf out of their book,” said Boulter of Leicester before Saturday’s match.

“They were something else. Maybe I can hopefully create that this year.”

Leicester defied 5,000-1 pre-season odds to clinch the title ahead of the top-flight’s established powerhouses, while Raducanu, ranked 150 in the world at the time, became the the first player to come through qualifying and clinch a Grand Slam title in an astonishing run at Flushing Meadows last year.

Emma Raducanu and Jamie Vardy
Emma Raducanu and Leicester City have both inspired Boulter before her meeting with Tan

Raducanu was knocked out of this year’s Wimbledon on Wednesday, overpowered by Caroline Garcia of France. But Boulter says her Davis Cup team-mate’s run in New York has made her reimagine what is possible.

“She came out, she surprised everyone, and she played some fearless tennis,” said Boulter, ranked 118 in the world.

“That’s what’s so impressive. I hope I can go out there and do the same thing. I’d love to do what she’s done. You never know, one day it might happen.”

Liam Broady is another Briton aiming to join compatriot Heather Watson in the fourth round. The 28-year-old from Stockport defeated 12th seed Diego Schwartzman in five sets and, like Boulter, is competing in the third round of a Grand Slam event for the first time.

However, Broady admits that he would understand if, for once, he didn’t get his compatriot’s support, given he is playing Boulter’s boyfriend, Australian 19th seed Alex De Minaur.

“I won’t judge her if she sits in ‘Demon’s’ box. She kind of has to, doesn’t she?,” Broady said.

“I know his game pretty well. He’s a fantastic player. He’s very good on the grass.

“But I fancy myself against anybody, to be honest.”

Swiatek aims to stretch streak towards Steffi stat

Iga Swiatek
Swiatek is well clear of her rivals in the rankings, with almost twice as many points as world number two Ons Jabeur

Top seed Iga Swiatek could extend her winning streak to 38 matches, a total unmatched since German legend Steffi Graf won 66 in a row in 1989-90, if she beats Alize Cornet to make the fourth round.

The Polish 21-year-old’s last defeat came in Dubai back in February. She has dropped only six sets in her streak since.

A two-time French Open champion and an Australian Open semi-finalist earlier this year, Swiatek would equal her best run at Wimbledon by beating French world number 37 Cornet on Court One. But she admitted she is still getting to grips with grass.

“I guess you can see that I’m not playing maybe as efficiently as on other surfaces,” she said.

“I would play well on grass if I would have kind of more time to just play on this surface. Every year it [the grass court season] is only like four weeks, so I feel it’s not enough to learn properly.”

Bay boy Kyrgios back in action

In one of the most eagerly anticipated matches of the day, Australian Nick Kyrgios will take on fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Kyrgios is ranked 35 places lower the Greek Tsitsipas, but, since memorably knocking out world number one Rafael Nadal on his debut Wimbledon campaign as a teenager, has always carried considerable threat on grass.

He also frequently comes with controversy. Kyrgios was fined $10,000 (£8,200) for his behaviour in his first-round win where he spat at a spectator and called a line judge a “snitch”.

Tsitsipas has seen Kyrgios’ antics up close. At the grass-court warm-up event in Halle in June, Kyrgios smashed up his racquet and got into an argument with the umpire over his alleged time-wasting during their match.

“I feel like everyone here knows who Nick is,’ Tsitsipas said.

“We have had many great matches against each other. I respect him for his game and the way he fights … when he wants to.”

Kyrgios has won three of the pair’s four previous meetings.

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