Katie Boulter booked her place in her first WTA Tour last and ensured she is going to
return to the highest 100 by beating compatriot Heather Watson on the Nottingham Open.
Boulter has cemented her new British No 1 standing this week, beating Harriet Dart within the quarter-finals on Thursday and now getting the higher of Watson with a 6-4 7-5 victory.
The 26-year-old, from close by Leicestershire, went into the week ranked 126 however has assured she might be again within the prime 100 subsequent week for the primary time since 2019.
Boulter mentioned: “It means a lot to me, particularly right here. It was a extremely powerful match. I simply tried to place my coronary heart on the road and managed to get via it ultimately.
“I’ve labored so onerous for this, me and my crew. I am simply going to maintain plugging away and, even when this is not my second, that is OK.”
At that stage, Boulter appeared set to push on in the direction of the highest 50, just for a stress fracture in her again to rule her out for seven months, and her progress has been stuttering since.
This was the primary all-British semi-final at tour stage since Sue Barker and Virginia Wade used to satisfy often within the latter phases of tournaments within the Nineteen Seventies.
And it might but be solely the third all-British WTA last, with Jodie Burrage taking over Alize Cornet within the different semi-final.
Grass fits Boulter’s onerous, flat hitting and she or he broke the Watson serve to guide 3-2 earlier than a rain delay of an hour-and-a-half disrupted issues.
Watson instantly broke again on the resumption, however, with each ladies complaining about line calls, Boulter moved forward once more earlier than clinching the set.
Watson appeared set to take it to a decider when she led 4-1 within the second set, however Boulter saved 4 break factors within the sixth sport to remain in rivalry and received six of the final seven video games.
There had been pressure between Boulter and Dart on the web over the previous’s celebration, however right here the 2 gamers shared a prolonged hug.