Emma Raducanu secures direct entry into the main draw of the Australian Open after American Lauren Davis withdrew due to a shoulder injury. Despite being ranked 301st in the world, Raducanu earned a special ranking of 103, reflecting her position before a six-month injury-related absence.
The 18-year-old Briton's return to Grand Slam action comes after her last appearance at the Australian Open in 2023, where she faced defeat in the second round against Coco Gauff. Raducanu, the former US Open champion, recently returned to the tour in Auckland, marking her first match since undergoing minor operations on both hands and her left ankle in May.
In addition to Davis, other players, including French Open finalist Karolina Muchova, Irina-Camelia Begu, Caty McNally, and two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova (who withdrew due to pregnancy), have pulled out of the upcoming Australian Open.
The tournament, set to commence on January 14 in Melbourne, will see Raducanu participating directly in the main draw, with the draw itself scheduled for January 11. Raducanu's journey continues with a second-round match against the second seed Elina Svitolina in Auckland, marking a significant step in her return to competitive tennis after the medical procedures earlier in the year.