Emma Raducanu will make her first trip to China since winning the US Open when she appears at an exhibition event in three weeks’ time – but she will not be fit enough to play.

Raducanu had surgery on both wrists and her right foot in early May, dealing with bone spurs in her hands and an ankle injury first sustained back in January.

All three procedures are said to be relatively straightforward but the recovery is still expected to rule her out for the rest of the summer, with late September understood to be the target date for a return to the practice court.

But she will attend the Hangzhou International Tennis Masters Tournament, which is due to run from 22 June to 25 June at the Olympic Sports Centre in Hangzhou, a city in eastern China which is home to nearly 12 million people.

i understands Raducanu is still planning to travel to China for the event, but only as an attendee and will take part in no tennis-related activities.

Raducanu is half-Chinese through her mother Renee and still has family in China’s Liaoning district in the northeast of the country.

“It was amazing news when I saw that the quarantine restrictions were being lifted,” Raducanu said in Australia back in January.

“So, I really hope to come. That would be amazing, I’d definitely go back to Shenyang and see my relatives, see my family.

“I haven’t been back since before the pandemic because it was extremely difficult and I’ve missed it a lot. So I am very much looking forward to that chance.”

In Hangzhou, she will be joined by a number of other grand slam champions including Carlos Moya, Marat Safin and Juan Martin del Potro as well as David Ferrer and a number of Chinese-based players. Previous versions of the event played host to Roger Federer, Alexander Zverev and legendary doubles pair Bob and Mike Bryan.

Earlier this week, Raducanu was replaced by Vodafone as its face of Wimbledon. The British No 1 signed a deal rumoured to be worth as much as £3m to be an ambassador for the telecommunications brand, who also sponsor Jack Draper, Gordon Reid and Alfie Hewett.

FIRST OPERATION / Tennis player Emma Raducanu waves from a bed after undergoing a surgery, at an unknown location, in this picture obtained from social media and released on May 3, 2023. Instagram @Emma Raducanu/via REUTERS THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES.
Raducanu had surgery on both wrists and her right foot in May (Photo: Reuters)

Raducanu was set to be the figurehead of their advertising campaign around Wimbledon, but given she will not be fit to compete at the grass-court major, Vodafone is understood to have chosen to make good out of a bad situation and use the wheelchair doubles pair of Reid and Hewett as their main player ambassadors instead.

However, Raducanu is understood to still be an ambassador for the brand.

By admin