British tennis star Emma Raducanu revealed she was “more nervous” about being photographed at the Met Gala than playing in the US Open final.
The 18-year-old Raducanu was propelled to international stardom after defeating Leylah Fernandez 6-4, 6-3 in the final of the Grand Slam.
Millions around the world were captivated by her journey from qualification to the final, as she won 10 matches on her way to the title without dropping a set.
Raducanu became the first ever qualifier to ever win a Grand Slam title, and the first female British tennis player to win a major since 1977.
The teenage star has since been making the most of her new-found fame, attending the Met Gala in New York alongside tennis legends Naomi Osaka, Serena and Venus Williams, and Maria Sharapova.
In an interview with the WTA, Raducanu revealed she found being photographed at the prestigious fundraising event more nerve wracking than playing in the US Open final.
“It was funny because I was more nervous standing and waiting to take the photos at the Met than going out onto Ashe [Arthur Ashe Stadium]. Because it was such a different experience. It was a bit more intimidating at the start but then I feel like I’ve learned that I can adapt quite quickly and learn on the job.”
Despite the initial nerves, Raducanu described the Met Gala as an “eye-opening experience”.
“I think that it’s really cool to be able to meet people and interact with people in different industries. At the Met Gala everyone is so experienced and so accomplished in their own way and it was really cool to hear how they are and their perspective on things. It was quite an eye-opening experience.
“I think that I don’t find anything too intimidating, I think? It’s just quite a nice thing to do because I’m learning so much about myself and what’s happening in the whole process of trying to adjust to things I probably wouldn’t have done before.
“But I’ve had fun doing the things I’ve done so far.”
Raducanu, who began this year ranked 345th in the world and only made her debut on the WTA tour in June, is now world number 23. She first made a name for herself at Wimbledon, where she reached the fourth round as a wildcard.
The Briton, who was born in Canada and has Romanian and Chinese heritage, revealed she had not expected the off the court opportunities which emerged from succeeding on the court.
“When I was younger I never imagined that all of the amazing opportunities off the court existed,” she said. “When I was younger and I watched older players win Slams, that was just the dream, the Slam on its own, the achievement, sharing it with the team and relatives and friends.
“But it’s just an added bonus, isn’t it, all of the really cool things you get to do.
“I think for me, still, I cherish most the moments with the team after the Grand Slam win. I think that was probably the most special night ever, when we were reflecting and just chatting about the last three weeks, the trip, and it was just a really nice moment to have shared with everyone.”