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Baltacha targets two more years

December 15, 2012 13:03:32 UK

The former Great Britain number one Elena Baltacha has indicated that she will play for two more years before retiring from the sport.

Elena Baltacha has not played since the Olympics.

However the 29-year-old, who had a foot operation in October from which she hopes to return from injury in March, admitted she had had doubts over coming back.

She has slipped to 173 in the world but has a protected ranking of 103, so will qualify for Grand Slams on her return.

She said: "My motivation to come back is that I think I've still got two or three more years. I don't think having that last match at the Olympics against Ana [Ivanovic] was the right time to pack it in. To be honest, I really needed that break. I didn't realise how exhausted I was, mentally and emotionally, and I hit a wall.

"I'm going to be very happy with what I've achieved whatever happens - being top 50 two years on the trot, all my top-ten wins - I will always be very, very proud of what I achieved.

"If it doesn't happen then that's just the way it is, but if I do, absolutely fantastic."

Baltacha is currently fifth in the country, behind Heather Watson who has a world ranking of 49, Laura Robson (53), Anne Keothavong (143) and Johanna Konta (156).

Baltacha is now eight weeks into her rehabilitation and several weeks ahead of schedule, with hopes of returning to the practice court in the new year.

The latest betting for next month's Australian Open has Ana Ivanovic at 81.00 to win the tournament while Serena Williams can be backed at 1.83 and Watson at 201.00.

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