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Page last updated at 12:42 GMT, Tuesday, 14 September 2010 13:42 UK

Elena Baltacha breaks into women's top 50 rankings

Elena Baltacha
Baltacha has climbed from 57th to 49th in the women's rankings

Scotland's Elena Baltacha has broken into the top 50 in the women's world tennis rankings.

The 27-year-old British number one has climbed from 57th to 49th following her most successful year on the circuit.

Baltacha qualified automatically for the Australian and US Opens for the first time and won her maiden $100,000 prize at the Michigan Tennis Classic.

"It's unbelievable; it feels special. Now that I'm top 50, you start setting your goals a lot higher," she said.

Following a frustrating injury spell her form improved after appointing Nino Severino as her coach two years ago.

Baltacha, who bowed out of the US Open after a second-round defeat by Petra Kvitova, is seeded for the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

The next goal is the top 40 and I think it's very possible if I keep working hard, keep my head down and keep developing

Elena Baltacha

And she revealed that her next target is a top 40 place.

"At the beginning of the year my goal was to stay in the top 100, I wasn't even thinking about the top 50 and here we are nine months on and I've broken top 50," she said.

"I spent about 10 years trying to make the top 100 and didn't get anywhere near it, so to do this at the age of 27 feels great.

"With everything that's happened over the years, with injury, illness and everything else, just makes it feel all the more amazing to achieve something like this."

Baltacha added: "Hopefully, my ranking is going to keep going up because I know that there is more left in the tank.

"Obviously, the next goal is the top 40 and I think it's very possible if I keep working hard, keep my head down and keep developing."

Baltacha delight at top 50 ranking

The Scot was keen to stress the importance of having a good team behind her.

"I've been through the possibility of retiring quite a few times and one time I really was about a week away from calling it a day," Baltacha added.

"Now when I think back to that and look at where I am now it gives me goosebumps.

"There is no way that I would be sitting at top 50 right now without my coach Nino Severino and all the people that he has bought him to help me, and the LTA."



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see also
Baltacha to review career targets
09 Sep 10 |  Tennis
Elena Baltacha column
02 Sep 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha campaign ends at US Open
01 Sep 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha takes British top spot
30 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Baltacha moves up to 64 in world
02 Mar 10 |  Tennis


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FROM OTHER SPORT SITES
Sportsister Tennis: Elena Baltacha breaks into top 50 - 17 hrs ago
AOL UK Baltacha makes top 50 - 17 hrs ago
Mirror.co.uk NADAL'S SLAM DE BUNK - 26 hrs ago
The Independent Baltacha delight at top 50 spot - 31 hrs ago
The Scotsman Elena Baltacha breaks into the top 50 - 32 hrs ago


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