Danielle Collins closing in on stunning rankings rise as impressive form continues

Kevin Palmer
Danielle Collins is moving on up the WTA Rankings
Danielle Collins has risen up the WTA Rankings yet again

When Danielle Collins confirmed this would be her final season in tennis, she could never have imagined the run of for she would embark on.

Collins stormed into the quarter-finals of the Rome Masters after a 6-0 6-3 win Irina Camelia Begu, as her sparkling form in 2024 continues.

Collins has a career-high ranking of No 7 in July 2022 and that mark is now within her sights as she has proved to be a match for the best in the game over the last few weeks.

This experienced performer confirmed she will be retiring from tennis later this year and that decision has sparked a sensational return to form for the 32-year-old.

She won the Miami Open to collect her first WTA 1000 event and backed that up by winning the title in Charleston a week later.

Those wins saw her lift her rankings from No 63 in mid-February up to No 15 heading into April.

Now Collins is making more progress in the WTA Rankings, with her latest win in Rome seeing he leap to No 12 in the live WTA Rankings, with a return to the top 10 now very much in her sights.

“I’m so glad that I have been able to figure out some of the physical things I have needed to do to peak at the right time and to feel like I’m ready to go,” said Collins.

She has constantly been asked whether she will consider reversing her decision to quit tennis, but Collins is not keen to re-consider her position.

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“I feel like all of these questions are coming from such a good place because I feel like a lot of people would like to continue seeing me play well,” she said of the retirement question.

“Like I said, I have some health challenges, and with those health challenges, it makes things for me away from the court a little more difficult. I hope everyone can respect that. It’s a very emotional and personal thing.

“I’m living with a chronic inflammatory disease that affects your ability to get pregnant. That’s a deeply personal situation. I’ve explained that from time to time.

“At the end of the day, this is my personal choice. This is so much more than just tennis and my career. I’m enjoying my career. I’m having a lot of fun.

“I love coming out here and competing, but this is a really big life decision and that should be pretty understandable.”

Collins will now take on fellow veteran Victoria Azarenka in the quarter-finals, as the women’s tournament in Rome threatens to overshadow the men’s tournament for a second week in succession.

World No 2 Aryna Sabalenka came through an epic contest Elina Svitolina in a match that finished at 12.45am local time, as she found a way to win again after saving a host of match points against her gutsy opponent.

Once again, Svitolina opted against shaking hands with Sabalenka at the net, with the Ukrainian refusing to exchange pleasantries at the net with a Belarusian player at a time when her country is in the midst of a war with Russia that is supported by Belarus.