What to expect as US Open winner Emma Raducanu returns to action at Indian Wells

Emma Raducanu will make her return to the match court at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells this week.

The US Open champion took some time off to digest her remarkable triumph and is sure to be one of the star attractions in the California desert.

Here, the PA news agency answers the key questions about the tournament.

What is the BNP Paribas Open?

The joint tournament on the WTA and ATP Tour is one of the biggest and most prestigious stops on the calendar outside the grand slams. Usually held in March, it was cancelled in 2019 and then postponed earlier this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

When will Raducanu play?

The tournament is held over two weeks, with main draw matches beginning on Wednesday. Now ranked 22, Raducanu will be among the 32 seeds and therefore receive a bye in the first round. Her first match will be on either Friday or Saturday.

What are her chances?

It is hard to say. If Raducanu can maintain the form she showed in New York then she should be a contender for lots of big titles. But the 18-year-old is still very inexperienced and it seems inevitable she will go through ups and downs as she adjusts to life at the top of the game. A strong showing in Indian Wells would make Raducanu a serious contender to qualify for the WTA Finals.

Does she have a coach?

No. Raducanu’s short-term deal with Andrew Richardson ended after the US Open and, despite the incredible success she enjoyed in New York, the teenager opted to look elsewhere, targeting someone with WTA experience. She does not expect to make an appointment until the end of the season and has been seen working in Indian Wells with former British number one Jeremy Bates, who coaches Katie Boulter and is also the Lawn Tennis Association’s national women’s coach.

Who else is playing?

There are a number of big names missing, including world number ones Ashleigh Barty and Novak Djokovic – plus Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams – but most of the leading players will be there along with British stars Dan Evans, Cameron Norrie, Heather Watson and Andy Murray who, like Raducanu, received a wild card.

Where can I watch the tournament?

In the UK and Ireland, the BNP Paribas Open will be shown on Amazon Prime Video. Indian Wells is eight hours behind British Summer Time, meaning much of the action will be during the night.