FILE - Britain’s Emma Raducanu celebrates with the championship trophy after defeating Leylah Annie Fernandez of Canada in the final of the US Open. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images/AFP
FILE - Britain’s Emma Raducanu celebrates with the championship trophy after defeating Leylah Annie Fernandez of Canada in the final of the US Open. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images/AFP

Eddie Jones’ advice to young flyhalf: ’Don’t be like Emma Raducanu’

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Nov 8, 2021

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Cape Town – England head coach Eddie Jones has warned young flyhalf Marcus Smith to avoid the pitfalls of celebrity in order to become a top player.

The 22-year-old Manila-born Smith has had a whirlwind year that saw him make his international Test debut for England, and being included in the British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa where he played one tour match.

Jones referenced young British tennis star Emma Raducanu as an example for Smith to avoid.

Like Smith, Raducanu seemingly popped out of nowhere in 2021. She reached the latter stages of Wimbledon as a qualifier, and shocked the world when she won the US Open title without dropping a single set.

Raducanu has since struggled on the court since becoming a global superstar who made an appearance at the Met Gala and attended the premiere of the new James Bond film.

“The big thing for good young players is distractions,” Jones said, according to Metro.co.uk.

“The distractions could be the exposure they get in the media, the praise they get, the criticism they get. There can be groups of agents who see this guy as the next big thing,” said Jones.

“There’s a reason why the young girl (Raducanu) who won the US Open hasn’t done so well afterwards.

“What have you seen her on – the front page of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar or whatever it is, wearing Christian Dior clothes. All that is a distraction around her.

“Marcus [Smith] is grounded, but they all start out grounded. No-one starts with their feet off the ground or they don’t get in the team and they don’t win a US Open.

“They all start grounded, but there are a flood of distractions which come in, which can make them ungrounded.”

IOL Sport

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