TENNIS clubs in Carlisle believe that Emma Raducanu’s success at the US Open could inspire the next generation of tennis players.

The 18-year-old won her quarter final tie against 11th seed Belina Bencic 6-3 6-4 last night.

She will line up against either Karolina Pliskova or Maria Sakkari in the next round, with their tie being played overnight in England.

Cumbrian tennis clubs have been watching her progress.

Roger Alston, chairman of Eden Lawn Tennis Club, Carlisle, said: “We’re all delighted that there’s somebody from our country who’s actually doing really well and can maybe take Andy Murray’s place.”

Sir Andy Murray has been Britain’s most successful tennis player in recent years, winning three grand slam titles.

Mr Alston said that when Murray was in his prime, “participation in tennis did go up considerably, according to figures from the Lawn Tennis Association.

“If she makes similar progress to him, then there will be a movement in that direction.

“We see tennis as a sort of middle class sport.

“Anything that gets people from minorities or women and girls playing, anything that stimulates participation in tennis is where we want to be.”

He admitted: “We don’t have enough young female members.”

Emma Raducanu came to prominence during this year’s Wimbledon, where she reached the round of 16.

Gareth Adams, a coach at Chatsworth Tennis Club in Carlisle, said: “I think female tennis players haven’t had somebody from Britain with the pedigree to not only compete at grand slams but to play tennis with a smile on her face.”

He hopes that Raducanu can encourage girls to “take up the sport, but also to keep going.

“There’s always a lot of teenage girls dropping out of sport.

“I think if they can see a teenage girl competing and being a role model it’s an absolute positive.”