Tennis fans at Wimbledon have said they are “devastated” by Emma Raducanu’s loss on day three but are rooting for her to come back stronger.
The reigning US Open champion crashed out of The Championships on Wednesday evening after losing to France’s Caroline Garcia.
Hundreds of fans watching from Centre Court and SW19’s famous Henman Hill appeared downcast after the 19-year-old’s second-round defeat.
Olivia Marr, 23, who was watching from the hill, said she felt “so sad” but believes Raducanu will “come back stronger”.
Miss Marr, who lives in Tooting, south London, told the PA news agency: “I was so sad, I thought she was going to win.
“Seeing the US Open and everything, I was watching with bated breath then as well.
“So it was a bit of a disappointment but I think she played really well.
“Garcia was a great, great player as well, she deserves the win.
“It’s so devastating to lose but it does make you stronger,” she added.
“I think she’ll come back stronger, 100%.
“She’s so young as well so she’s got so much to learn.”
Morgan Willmott and her boyfriend Dylan Shepherd, both 19, thought Raducanu caved under unimaginable pressure for someone their own age.
Miss Willmott, 19, from Cheam in Sutton, south-west London, said: “You could see she was frustrated, and under so much pressure for her age.
“It was sad, especially how young she is.”
Mr Shepherd, an amateur golfer from Hawley in Hampshire, added: “She was always behind, she could never get a foothold, and couldn’t quite claw it back.
“She’s a home-grown player, and when a home-grown player loses you never want to see that.
“She’s got a lot of pressure on her back – everyone here is rooting for her.
“She’s got all these people she thinks she has to win for.”
Paula George, a museum employee from Howden-le-Wear in County Durham, said she was on Centre Court in Nottingham when Raducanu sustained a side strain earlier this year.
Speaking on the hill in Wimbledon, Ms George said she thought the injury might have held her back.
Ms George told PA: “I saw her in Nottingham, so I was there for that match at Centre Court when she pulled out injured.
“It could be that that’s still bothering her. It looked quite bad from where I was.
“She’s still just young, she can get stronger.
“She was the underdog at the US Open and really there was no pressure on her.
“She wasn’t expected to get through some of those matches but everything’s changed now – everybody knows who Emma Raducanu is, so there’s a lot of expectation on her so it depends if she can manage that.”
Angela Mooney, 53, a cook from Glasgow in Scotland, added: “I think there’s maybe a wee question mark over her fitness as well.”
Jill McBrier, a 65-year-old housewife from South Africa, said: “It was really sad.
“I’d like her to have gone further.
“There was so much hype about her and coming off that she’s done well to get where she is but I’d have liked her to have gone further.”