The 19-year-old British tennis star is the front runner in the Sports Personality of the Year award tonight. She competes against diver Tom Daley, boxer Tyson Fury, swimmer Adam Peaty, soccer player Raheem Sterling and Paralympic cyclist Dame Sarah Storey. Raducanu made her place in the history books in September when she won the US Open at Flushing Meadows, New York, and became the first British woman to win the tournament since Virginia Wade in 1968.
Beating Leylah Fernandez earned her a first Grand Slam title and ended the UK’s 44-year wait for a female champion in one of the sport’s four best competitions.
After the teen’s historic triumph, she went on a fast-paced tour of the Big Apple, performing at the star-studded Met Gala and the New York Stock Exchange.
The US Open champion gave countless interviews and also became Dior’s global ambassador.
Long before her successes on the court, however, Raducanu admitted that her parents had “high expectations” of her and “not just in tennis”.
The athlete spoke in an interview last year about her upbringing with her Chinese father and her Romanian mother.
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She was quoted by local news site Daily UK News as saying, “My parents definitely have high expectations.
“In everything, not even just in tennis. I have to be the best, do my best.
“When I was younger I wanted to please them, but now it’s great for me to do it on my own – that’s where I see the best results I think when I drive it.”
Ahead of her US Open win this year, Raducanu lit up Wimbledon before retiring in the fourth round after having “difficulty breathing”.
During her impressive run at SW19, the aspiring star was still waiting for her A-level exam results.
Raducanu went on to talk about her parents’ impact on her game and other aspects of her life when she spoke to Vogue ahead of the US Open final in September.
The young Brit said that her mother and father helped to “keep her on the ground” even after her great victories.
She said, “I think you did a really great job.
“Because I don’t feel like anything is different, in a way. I was right back at work.
“And I think that’s because for many years they are just super focused and not too high, but not too low at the same time when the losses come.”
Sports Personality of the Year will air tonight from 6:45 pm to 9:00 pm on BBC One.