By Abi Curran, Sportsbeat
Katie Boulter can crack the world’s top 50 after her searing grass court season, according to former British No.1 Laura Robson.
The Leicester player, 27, soared to the top of the British women’s ranking after reaching the semi-finals of the LTA’s Lexus Surbiton Trophy before wowing fans with an impressive LTA’s Rothesay Open Nottingham win over Jodie Burrage in an all-British final.
But Boulter endured a tougher test at Wimbledon when she was knocked out by reigning champion Elena Rybakina in the third round.
Former world No.82 Robson, 29, backed Boulter to build on the foundations of her summer form and make further improvements on her current WTA singles ranking of 60.
She said: “There’s a lot of tennis to be played, Katie doesn’t have a lot to defend for the rest of the year in terms of points.
“It’s a real chance for her to crack the top 50 for the first time and go beyond that – I’m sure it’s on her mind.
“It’s different for everyone but she definitely needs to enjoy it and it’s a great thing being British No.1.
“I’m sure she will want to be ranked as high as possible and certainly the top 50 would be her next goal.
“To have that asterisk next to your name as number one is always a good thing and it just motivates the others to push on because everyone wants that title.
“Everyone being around that same level is going to motivate the others to do even better and to keep improving.”
Robson was running a coaching clinic for aspiring tennis players at the Play Your Way to Wimbledon event, powered by Vodafone, the largest individual mass participation tennis competition in the UK.
With the Paris Olympic Games on the horizon, Boulter could look to emulate Robson’s memorable mixed doubles silver medal alongside Andy Murray at London 2012.
But Robson insists there is still a lot of tennis to be played, adding “The Paris Olympics seems a long way off.
“I’m sure it’s on her mind but it’s not something that will be at the forefront at the moment when we have such a long calendar.
“It’s a real chance for a bunch of the girls like Katie to play in their first Olympics and for Heather (Watson) to play another one.
“There was a lot of doom and gloom talk earlier this summer about the state of British tennis.
“I think all of the players proved them wrong because there has been some fantastic tennis, especially Nottingham week, four ladies in the quarter-finals, you can’t really ask for anything more.”
Play Your Way to Wimbledon, powered by Vodafone, is the UK’s largest individual mass participation tennis competition that gives players an opportunity to follow in their heroes’ footsteps and compete at Wimbledon. The All England Club and LTA are proud to partner with Vodafone to expand the competition to more players in 2023 with an Adult Doubles pathway, alongside Visual Impairment, Learning Disability and Wheelchair tennis categories.