Romanian tennis star Simona Halep has backed British number one Emma Raducanu to become a top 10 player in the world and prove to the world that her US Open triumph was not a fluke.
Raducanu’s father was born in Romania and she has previously cited Halep as an idol growing up.
Both players are competing at this week’s Transylvanian Open, with Halep seeded first and Raducanu third.
Halep plays her compatriot Elena-Gabriela Ruse in the first round tomorrow, while Raducanu takes on Slovenia’s Polona Hercog.
The pair could potentially meet for the first team if they both progress to the semi-finals, though fans would not be able to watch the two stars battle it out, with the competition being played behind closed doors.
Though Halep was Raducanu’s idol growing up, the Romanian has been vocal in her praise of the Brit as well.
After the teenager’s unprecedented victory in the US Open last month, Halep was left amazed and believes the British star has the mental strength to be able to win more Slams in the future.
“What Emma achieved is unbelievable and it’s all credit to her because she played so well in New York and played so many matches,” she said.
“Her mentality was very strong and also the game. She showed great tennis, was very fast, played close to the baseline and the movement also was great.
“She has achieved already a Grand Slam title and is able to achieve everything.
“She has now the experience of winning the biggest tournaments in tennis.
“Easily she can go into the top 10 sooner than everybody thinks because already she is close to that.
“She has a bright future and for sure, she will be one of the best players in the world.”
Full coverage of the Transylvanian Open is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video for customers in the UK and Ireland.News Now - Sport News