British star set for rankings breakthrough after a decade on the ATP Tour
Maximising your sporting potential is the target of all professional athletes and for Britain’s Liam Broady, one of his biggest dreams is about to be ticked off.
The British No 4 has been battling to break into the top 100 of the ATP rankings throughout his career and at the age of 29, he looks set to reach that goal next week.
Broady has made progress in the ATP Challenger event at Saint-Tropez over the last few days and after an impressive run of form in the last few months, it looks likely to fire him onto the top 100 of the ATP rankings for the first time in his career.
Broady made it through to the third round at Wimbledon in July, with his success story including a thrilling five-set victory against world No 4 Casper Ruud in front of a captivated Centre Court crowd.
He has followed that up with semi-final appearances in a couple of ATP Challenger events and a near miss in the US Open qualifying competition, as he reached the third round and lost out narrowly to Japan’s Sho Shimabukuro.
That setback has now been erased from Broady’s mind as after a run to the semi-final of the ATP Challenger event in Cassis earlier this month, his progress at a Saint-Tropez Challenger this week has secured his elevation to the top 100 of the rankings for the first time.
Broady would have been knocking on the door of the top 100 if he had collected ranking points from reaching the third round at Wimbledon in 2022 had counted.
Yet the decision to strip the tournament of ranking points after their move to ban Russian and Belarusian players following the war in Ukraine denied so many players a chance to claim what could have been career-defining ranking points.
Now Broady appears to have broken through the glass ceiling of the top 100, as he is realising some of his biggest ambitions.
“I was a very good junior, I got to No. 2 in the world,” he reflected at Wimbledon last summer.
“I played on Court 1 in the finals of the juniors. I was a set and a break up. I completely choked it, completely guffed it. That has kind of haunted me my entire career, to be honest.
“I think that is one of the reasons why it took me so long to win a Challenger, as well. I lost seven challenger finals in a row.
“It always bothered me coming back and playing on the bigger courts and never really feeling like I was comfortable and had performed. Losing to Andy Murray on Centre, losing to (Milos) Raonic on Court No.1, and then Alex de Minaur, without winning so much as a set.”
Broady also revealed the sacrifices he has made to play at the top of the game.
“I don’t have a car. I don’t take holidays and I don’t have a house” he added.
“For me, I want to be able to support my family in any way I can. If the opportunity is there and it’s needed, I want to not have to worry for the rest of my life.
“I don’t want to be working till I’m 70 years old, especially when I’ve sacrificed the first 25 out of 29 years of my life for the sport of tennis. I’ve not had a life. I want to be able to see something for that sacrifice.”
Now Broady looks set to be handed the ultimate reward for his sacrifice, with a place in the top 100 of the world rankings an impressive reward for a career where nothing has come easily.
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