Mega-riches await

Raducanu completes her fairytale of New York

Sensation: Emma Raducanu

E. Raducanu bt L. Fernandez 6-4 6-3
Arthur Ashe Stadium


Emma Raducanu completed her New York fairytale with a stunning victory in the US Open that could make her one of the world’s highest paid sportswomen.

The 18-year-old from Kent became the first qualifier to win a Grand Slam tournament – and did so without losing a set in 10 matches.

Her 6-4 6-3 triumph over Leylah Fernandez, 19, in just under two hours also saw her become the youngest Brit to capture a Grand Slam title. The win landed her a cheque for £1.8m and kick-started a scramble among sponsors to back the new sporting sensation.

Raducanu’s earnings potential will now sky rocket with sponsors already queuing up to be associated with one of the hottest properties in sport. She will be due a huge bonus from Nike – one of her two current sponsors, along with racquet maker Wilson, but high-end brands, banks and insurers are also keen to share the glory.

Estimates of her earning power can only be compared with Naomi Osaka who was the highest earning player in tennis last year, banking $60m of which $55m came from sponsors including Google and Mastercard.

The marketing specialist Mark Borkowski, who has worked with Michael Jackson, Joan Rivers and Led Zeppelin, among others, reckoned that Raducanu could become Britain’s first billion-dollar sport star.

Aside from her beaming smile and vulnerability she has a few strings to her bow that make her eminently marketable to an international customer base. She was born in Canada to parents from Romania and China and can speak Mandarin, thereby opening the doors to the world’s second biggest economy.

Channel Four, which secured a last minute deal to show the final live on Saturday night, was rewarded with some of its best viewing figures – again highlighting Raducanu’s pulling power.

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