Raducanu ‘can inspire others into sport’

December 6, 2021
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    Emma Raducanu's US Open success can help inspire more women and girls to take part in sport, campaigners say.

    The 18-year-old created history by becoming the first British woman in 44 years to win a Grand Slam singles title.

    Kate Dale, the campaign lead for This Girl Can, also says the teenager can help others discover a love of sport.

    "It's another example of a fantastic achievement of women's sport," Dale told BBC Radio 5 Live.

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    "I think she is a role model for women and girls, and I'm sure for boys and men in so many ways.

    "I think it's not just the fact that she won, but the way that she did it – the style, the composure, the level-headedness that she's had throughout has just been extraordinary."

    This Girl Can was set up by Sport England in 2015 to get more young women and children active.

    The latest sport participation research from Sport England shows that boys (47% or 1.7m) remained more likely to be active than girls (43% or 1.5m), with a gap of 213,000. 

    This Girl Can also aims to address the barriers stopping girls taking up sport, such as fear of judgement and lack of confidence.

    But Dale hopes Raducanu's impressive displays in New York can help change attitudes towards women and girls in sport and show they belong as much as men and boys do.

    "Three months ago she was doing her A-levels – I think that is part of her appeal as is the fact she does feel like someone we could all know. She's very relatable," she added.

    "You have to see yourself or imagine yourself doing it,although obviously most of us are never going to achieve anything like that level. That doesn't matter and that is our point with This Girl Can.

    "You are doing it for your reasons, your motivation and the reasons it works for you. It doesn't have to be up at that level but just somebody going out there and living her best life really inspires us all to do that."

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