Emma Raducanu has defended her commitment to tennis.
The US Open champion hit out at the “unfair” response to her growing list of commercial partners after she suffered another defeat at the Miami Open.
Raducanu recently became a brand ambassador for the car manufacturer Porsche but the British number one insists that she is fully focused on improving her results on court.
The tennis ace told reporters: “Maybe you just see, on the news or on social media, me signing this or that deal and I feel like it’s quite misleading because I’m doing five, six hours a day [of training], I’m at the club for 12 hours a day.
“But I throw out one post in the car on the way to practice and all of a sudden it’s, ‘I don’t focus on tennis’. I think that it is unfair but it’s something I have learned to deal with and become a bit more insensitive to the outside noise.
“At the end of the day, I feel like my days [with sponsors] are pretty limited. I’m not doing crazy days. I’m doing three, four days every quarter, so it’s really not that much.”
Former player Daniela Hantuchova claimed that Raducanu is “losing the respect” that she built up amongst fellow players following her stunning win in New York with her current poor form.
She said after Raducanu’s loss in Miami: “All the locker-room respect she had after the US Open is now kind of going away which is a shame.
“It is going to be important now for Emma to regroup, rethink what she has to change and get out there on the practice court.
“At that age, you want to be fit, you want to show everyone that you are out there, no matter how long it takes. It was humid and it wasn’t easy out there.
“But this is where you have to be tough if you want to win matches like this, if you want to win tournaments like this. And I believe Emma has the level, she just has to find a way to get it out of her.”