Laura Robson capped off an emphatic 2012 season this week after the Women’s Tennis Association crowned her the Newcomer of the Year.
Robson, 18, has enjoyed a breakthrough season that saw her rise in the rankings from 131 to 53. She became the first British woman in 22 years to make a WTA tour final, in Guangzhou, and reached the second week of the US Open, scalping Kim Clijsters and Li Na on the way.
“I looked at the list of past winners and it’s certainly a very impressive line-up that includes many of my idols growing up,” Robson told BBC Sport.
“I hope that I can go on to achieve close to what many of the past winners have achieved in their careers.”
Indeed, Robson is right to look at past names that have won the newcomer of the year award and feel confident she will make it at the top of the women’s game. The list includes Maria Sharapova (2003), Clijsters (1999) and Serena Williams (1998), all of whom have risen to become major players on the WTA circuit.
While Robson’s Guangzhou final achievement was somewhat overshadowed by fellow Brit Heather Watson’s triumph at the Japan Open a few days later, the 18-year-old will still be delighted with how her season has panned out. The pinnacle of her career so far is that coveted silver medal earned at London 2012 where Robson, partnered by Andy Murray, surged to the final on Centre Court before falling at the last hurdle.
2013 promises to be a huge year for Britain’s two brightest young talents and Robson will be hoping to break into the top 20 or even 10 by this time next year. Hats off to Laura for her WTA award and long may her success continue.