Home » ‘Astonishing’ Lulu Sun wins praise from British media over Wimbledon win

‘Astonishing’ Lulu Sun wins praise from British media over Wimbledon win

‘Astonishing’ Lulu Sun wins praise from British media over Wimbledon win

Lulu Sun in action in the fourth round at Wimbledon.
Photo: AFP

Lulu Sun’s ”thunderbolt” forehands and her calm demeanour have won praise after her victory over British star Emma Raducanu in the fourth round at Wimbledon.

Sun, who was born in the Southland town of Te Anau and earlier this year switched allegiance from Switzerland to New Zealand, outplayed Raducanu 6-2 5-7 6-2 to move into the quarterfinals, where she will play Croatia’s Donna Vekic.

She is the first Kiwi woman to make the last eight at Wimbledon, a feat all the more remarkable because the 123rd ranked female player in the world was only playing her second Grand Slam event. She is now guaranteed at least $782,000 in prize money for the tournament.

ulu Sun of New Zealand reacts after winning the ladies’ singles 4th round match against Emma Raducanu of United Kingdom on the day 7 of the Wimbledon tennis championships at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, United Kingdom on July 7, 2024. Lulu Sun won the match to advance to quarterfinals.( The Yomiuri Shimbun )
Takuya Matsumoto / Yomiuri / The Yomiuri Shimbun via AFP

Lulu Sun reacts after her three-set win.
Photo: AFP / Takuya Matsumoto

While the British media focused on Raducanu – and her slip in the third set which caused a a medical time-out for physio treatment – Sun earned kudos for her performance.

“Sun walloped a mighty 52 winners – the highest total in the entirety of the women’s draw to date. So devastating was her forehand that her racket could have been strung with nitroglycerin,” the Telegraph‘s Simon Briggs wrote.

He picked up on Sun taking to the court wearing an advertising patch which carried the word “Astonish”, calling it a ”brutal coincidence” after the controversy involving Raducanu pulling out of her mixed doubles match with Andy Murray.

Murray’s mother Judy had tweeted at the weekend that Raducanu’s withdrawal was “astonishing”, an adjective Briggs said could be used to describe Sun’s performance.

The Guardian noted Sun’s implacable air and powerful arm.

“Every time Raducanu attempted a lob, the 23-year-old smote it back with a drive volley. It must have felt like Zeus was out there hurling thunderbolts. And they came with a deadly accuracy, too – the sequence of chalk puffs at Raducanu’s end were a visible demonstration how brilliantly Sun was judging the baseline.”

The Guardian said that Sun made some errors and could have closed out the match in the second set.

“Still, knocking out a Brit in front of a Centre Court crowd to make the final eight? Not bad for your first Wimbledon.”

The Independent said: “The Sun, really, was on fire, as the last British player in the singles draw was wiped off Centre Court by a barrage of forehand strikes from the 23-year-old only making her second appearance at a grand slam.”

Britain's Emma Raducanu reacts after slipping on the court whilst trying to reach a ball from New Zealand's Lulu Sun during their fourth round match on the seventh day of the 2024 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 7, 2024.

Britain’s Emma Raducanu reacts after slipping on the court while trying to reach a ball from New Zealand’s Lulu Sun at Wimbledon.
Photo: AFP

The BBC said Raducanu achieved a fairytale when she won as a teenage qualifier in New York almost three years ago.

“This time, it is Sun’s dreams which are coming true.”

It said she oozed confidence. “Flashy winners came behind a superb serve, while the confident bounce in her step allowed her to finish off 23 of 28 points at the net.”

Reuters said Sun showed “ice-cool composure and unflappable bravery” in beating Raducanu in front of a pumped-up crowd supporting the Brit.

Raducanu herself said of Sun: “Level-wise, I think she’s playing better than all my previous opponents.

“I went into this [match] very much aware of that. She was playing aggressive, she just kept swinging and making the ball. I think credit to her for doing that. Yeah, see how it goes the rest of the tournament.”