Emma Raducanu’s Christian Dior photoshoot blamed for slip in results by England rugby boss
Queen stayed up late to watch Emma Raducanu win says Levin
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Emma Raducanu’s recent defeats are due to her Christian Dior photoshoot and other media commitments, according to England’s rugby coach. Eddie Jones is keen to protect rising star Marcus Smith and aims to avoid the same “distractions” he believes the US Open champion is faced with.
The 22-year-old was influential in England’s convincing 69-3 win over Tonga after coming off the bench on Saturday.
Hailed as a “future superstar of the game,” Smith’s impressive performance marked just the Harlequin’s star third game for the 2003 world champions after making his debut back in July.
Fans are very excited about the fly-half and interested to see what he is able to achieve under Howe, but the coach is managing his development very carefully.
“The big thing for good young players is distractions, the distractions could be the exposure they get in the media, the praise they get, the criticism they get,” Howe commented.
“There can be groups of agents who see this guy as the next big thing.
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“There’s a reason why the young girl who won the US Open hasn’t done so well afterwards.”
Raducanu began to gain notoriety following her impressive performance at Wimbledon where she reached the fourth round.
She would follow it up with a truly remarkable run to the US Open title and became a global superstar in the process.
The teen soon donned the front of magazine covers, and was the subject of several interviews following her epic win.
This is something Howe is guarding against for Smith, who is likely to see him given the role of ringmaster when the Autumn Nations Series continues against Australia
“What have you seen her on – the front page of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar or whatever it is, wearing Christian Dior clothes,” the 61-year-old added.
“All that is a distraction around her. It might not be to that degree with Marcus, but potentially it could be.
“So the guidance we can give him when he’s with us, the guidance that he gets from Harlequins and the guidance he gets from his parents – who I know, fortunately, are very good people – will be important so he can keep his feet on the ground and keep impressing as a rugby player.”
He continued: “Marcus 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.”
Raducanu is due to play at the Linz Open in Austria this week, which is her final tournament of a groundbreaking 2021 season.
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