Alex de Minaur officially dropped out of the top 10 of the ATP rankings when they were updated this week, but the news is much better for girlfriend Katie Boulter. English player Boulter has risen to No.45 in the world in the live WTA rankings - which marks a career high for the 27-year-old.
Boulter beat sixth seed Jasmine Paolini 6-2 6-2 at the Linz Open in Austria, a remarkable victory considering Paolini made the fourth round at the Australian Open. The victory for Boulter has set up a clash in the round of 16 with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, and the Brit will be brimming with confidence.
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She has shown some stellar form to start 2023, notching a number of wins at the United Cup and Adelaide International before the Australian Open. She then made the second round at the Melbourne Park grand slam before falling to eventual runner-up Qinwen Zheng.
Boulter is officially ranked World No.53, but her win over Paolini has seen her rise to 45 in the live rankings. She could go even higher if she manages to beat Pavlyuchenkova on Wednesday. Tennis fans were delighted for Boulter, who was noticeably wearing a green and gold outfit on Tuesday in what was perhaps a nod to Aussie boyfriend de Minaur.
What's going on with Katie? Why is she breaking through now? Is she practising with De Minaur? And why has his form improved too? I think we need Hello magazine to do a couples feature and we can find out.
— Terry Towelling (@TerryTowellingg) January 29, 2024
We've always had this buzzing sense that, as soon as Katie Boulter got 100% healthy and 100% confident, she'd start wrecking things for everybody else.
Looks like 2024 might be the year!
After kicking off the season with a win over Jessie Pegula, Boulter keeps… pic.twitter.com/2tOtTxc080
— Tick Tock Tennis (@TickTockTennis) January 29, 2024
Katie Boulter Moves up to a Career high of 45! I’m pretty sure she has now automatic entry into Doha in 2 weeks
She will next play Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova In Linz 🇦🇹R2 pic.twitter.com/o6OTsXjHqm
— emma.cocofansss | #2inAbuDhabi (@emma_cocofanss) January 29, 2024
At least Katie Boulter won! 💪
— Genevieve (@gena19newman) January 29, 2024
Good start to the year for Katie Boulter!
— Kermit Kane (@KermitKane11) January 29, 2024
That is a pretty impressive performance from katie boulter 23winner to just 14UE saving all 5BP pic.twitter.com/ig9tZP9X5Y
— Khurram ali (@Mirragoat) January 29, 2024
Alex de Minaur drops out of top 10 in ATP rankings
Boulter's rise will surely delight de Minaur, who once again failed to make it past the fourth round of the Australian Open. The Aussie star held a two sets to one lead over Andrey Rublev, but couldn't go on with the job and lost in five sets.
It marked the fourth time in five tries that de Minaur has lost in the fourth round of a grand slam, and he's never made it to the quarters of his home tournament. His lone appearance in the quarter-finals of a grand slam came at the US Open in 2020.
In a cruel twist, de Minaur has now dropped out of the top 10 as a result. Heading into the Australian Open he'd become the first Aussie men's player to reach the top 10 since mentor Lleyton Hewitt in 2006.
The rankings feat came after he scored wins over big guns Novak Djokovic, Taylor Fritz and Alexander Zverev at the United Cup. And even though he managed to defend his rankings points after making the fourth round at the Australian Open two years running, he has now slipped from 10th to 11th.
Fritz's run to the quarter-finals has seen him jump back into the top 10 and bump de Minaur out. Fritz only made the second round of the Australian Open last year, meaning the American gained some big points for making the final eight in 2024.
Fritz came into the tournament as World No.12, but has now jumped to ninth and bumped de Minaur out of the top 10. While being World No.11 is nothing to sneeze at, you can beat de Minaur will be hell bent on breaking back into the top 10.
It hasn't been confirmed when the Aussie star will be back in action, but it looks like his next tournament could be Acapulco in Mexico in February. Making things tricky for de Minaur is the fact he won the event in 2023, meaning he'll need to win it again this year just to defend his points. Anything less than the title in 2024 will see him slip down the rankings again.
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