Elena Rybakina broke into the top 10 list of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) rankings for the first time in her career, QazMonitor reports.
After her match against Sabalenka at the Australian Open 2023 finals, where she lost by two points in the third set, Rybakina moved 15 positions up to number 10.
Despite missing out on a second Grand Slam title, wins against major players such as World No.1 Iga Swiatek, Jelena Ostapenko, and Victoria Azarenka gave her a huge confidence boost.
"I think in the end it's just confidence to go forward, to keep on working. I feel now good physically also. I know if I'm going to keep on working, the results are going to be there," Rybakina told reporters after the Australian Open final.
"I don't think I'm going to feel different just because of the ranking."
"But for sure it's going to be different at the smaller tournaments, I would say. I'm going to be seeded. Maybe in some tournaments I'm not going to play first round. So of course there is some benefits out of this."
Other Kazakh players also showed improvements in the rankings. Yulia Putintseva climbed three spots, while Zhibek Kulambayeva moved up 34 spots. In the doubles ranking, Anna Danilina placed 24th.
WTA Singles rankings, as of January 30:
Elena Rybakina: 10th place (+15), 2,815 points
Yulia Putintseva: 44th place (+3), 1,114 points
Zhibek Kulambayeva: 449th place (+34), 102 points
Gozal Aynitdinova: 506th place (+79), 82 points
Anna Danilina: 543rd place (-73), 70 points
Aruzhan Sagandikova: 1182nd place, 7 points