England coach Eddie Jones warns rising star Marcus Smith not to lose his focus like U.S. Open winner Emma Raducanu – saying she was ‘on the front page of Vogue and wearing Christian Dior’ but struggled to win games
- Young fly-half Marcus Smith had an impressive cameo for England in Tonga win
- Harlequins star, 22, is being tipped as the next big thing for the national side
- But England coach Eddie Jones has warned Smith not to get distracted
- Jones cited the example of Emma Raducanu following her U.S. Open triumph
- Raducanu’s form has slumped since she won against all odds in New York
England coach Eddie Jones has told young fly-half Marcus Smith to be wary of the ‘flood of distractions’ that could come his way as the ‘next big thing’ and highlighted tennis player Emma Raducanu’s dip in form since she shot to fame at the U.S. Open.
Raducanu gained celebrity status with her maiden Grand Slam win at Flushing Meadows, with brands lining up to offer her sponsorship deals and a host of magazines featuring her on the front cover.
But the 18-year-old Briton has failed to recapture that form since, suffering an early exit at Indian Wells and losing in the quarter-finals of the Transylvania Open last month.
Raducanu pictured at the Met Gala in New York two days after her win at the U.S. Open – her rise to fame has been used by England coach Eddie Jones as a warning to Marcus Smith
Raducanu pictured in designer clothes during a photoshoot for Vogue’s October edition
Marcus Smith played an eye-catching cameo in England’s 69-3 win over Tonga on Saturday
But England coach Eddie Jones has told Smith to be wary of getting distracted by the attention
Smith is considered England’s next big breakout player and after the 22-year-old made a sparkling cameo in their 69-3 thrashing of Tonga over the weekend, Jones said it was crucial he kept his feet on the ground.
‘The big thing for young players is distractions,’ Jones said. ‘Distractions can be the exposure they get in the media, the praise and criticism they get, groups of agents who see this guy as the next big thing.
‘There’s a reason why the girl who won the U.S. Open hasn’t done so well afterwards. What have you seen her on? The front page of Vogue, the front page of Harper’s Bazaar, whatever it is, wearing Christian Dior clothes.
Raducanu has struggled for form after winning the U.S. Open and recently went out of the Transylvania Open at the quarter-final stage
Raducanu shot to fame after unexpectedly winning the New York Slam back in September
The fly-half scored one of England’s tries during an emphatic win at Twickenham
‘He is grounded, but they all start off grounded. No one starts with their feet off the ground or they don’t get in the team, or they don’t win a U.S. Open. But there’s this flood of distractions that comes in that makes you ungrounded.’
Raducanu, who is the top seed in Linz this week, had said tennis is her priority and she will not let her off-court commitments get in the way of training.
‘I made it very, very clear to every single person in my team that I was not going to cancel one training session or practice session for any off-court commitments,’ she said.
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