Stosur targets titles after cracking top 10
Originally published on: 23/03/10 17:31
A career-threatening illness ruled her out of the game for six months in 2007, but Sam Stosur’s determination to reach the heights of the women’s game was rewarded this week after the Aussie’s Indian Wells performance earned her a place in the world’s top 10.
Stosur, a four-time Grand Slam champion in women’s and mixed doubles, became the first Australian woman to crack the elite women’s field in five years after her career-best run to the semi-finals at the BNP Paribas Open.
The Aussie’s feat – last attained by Alicia Molik – represents a significant achievement for the soon-to-be 26-year-old, given that she was ruled out of the game for six months in 2007 with the debilitating Lyme disease, an infection transmitted by tick bites.
“I guess since I started playing again, I wanted to get there,” Stosur said of her newly acquired spot in the top 10. “You never really know if it’s ever really going to happen.
“It’s very exciting and to see it on paper today was pretty cool.”
Speaking from Miami, where she is seeded ninth for the upcoming Sony Ericsson Open, Stosur added: “I’ve been pushing to get here for a little while now and I knew it was close and thought it was within reaching distance. So to get it this early in the year is pretty exciting.”
In her breakthrough season last year, Stosur won her maiden singles title in Osaka and earned a place in the French Open semi-finals – by far her best Grand Slam run to date, having failed to surpass the fourth round in any other slam.
But tournament victories are her priority now, and the Queenslander is determined to improve on her quarter-final showing in Miami last year, when she dismantled Dinara Safina and Amelie Mauresmo on route to the last eight.
“I’d like to be winning more tournaments than what I have, but I guess the rankings are the result of overall consistency and how you go on a yearly basis,” Stosur reasoned.
“So you get a better ranking by winning more matches and doing better in every tournament, so it’s definitely a reflection of what I’ve been able to do.
“But I’d definitely love to be able to try and win another title sometime soon, that’s for sure.”
In the absence of world No.1 Serena Williams – who knocked her out in the fourth round of the Australian Open – Miam’s prestigious ‘unofficial fifth slam’ would certainly be a fine place to start.