Katie Boulter won’t let off-court commitments distract her from ambitious goals

Katie Boulter insists she will not become distracted by off-court commitments after expressing her dream of becoming the world’s best in a high-profile article with Tatler magazine.

Boulter, who this month replaced Emma Raducanu as British number one, features on the front of the August edition of the lifestyle publication alongside compatriots Cameron Norrie and Jack Draper.

In the piece, the 26-year-old shared hopes of emulating 2021 US Open champion Raducanu by clinching a grand slam title, in addition to ambitions of one day rising to the top of the WTA rankings.

Despite feeling comfortable in the spotlight and enjoying the glamour of a photo shoot, Boulter, who on Tuesday faces world number 10 Barbora Krejcikova in the first round of Eastbourne, is adamant sport comes first.

“That was super-fun for me to do,” she said of the Tatler piece, which was done before the French Open. “I have never done anything like that before.

“We can always get lost in tennis and I spend my life in sweats and working my arse off and I think it’s sometimes nice to kind of completely switch off and do something totally different.

“(But) I would like to think that I am quite grounded with this stuff. No matter what I am going to do, I am going to be working hard, day in, day out.

“I don’t want to get wrapped up in spending too much time off the court, doing other commitments.”

Boulter is back on the rise following injury issues after claiming her first WTA Tour title by beating fellow Briton Jodie Burrage in the Rothesay Nottingham Open final on June 18.

She admits to having at one stage deleted her social media accounts in order to not “lose track” of tennis.

Following this week’s endeavours as a wildcard at the Rothesay International in Sussex, she will bid to better last year’s third-round exit at Wimbledon.

“Of course, I understand there are a lot of eyes on me but, at the same time, I feel they are right behind me, helping me,” she said.

British number one Katie Boulter triumphed in Nottingham
British number one Katie Boulter triumphed in Nottingham (Nigel French/PA)

“I see it more of a positive thing than anything else.

“I’m going to keep striving for (world number one) but I’ve got a long way to go. I’ve got different steps I need to take.

“I’ve taken the first one these past couple of weeks (winning in Nottingham) and I’ve got many more I need to take before I get to that stage and I am very realistic with what I’m thinking at the same time.

“By the end of the year, I’ve obviously got my own sort of goals but I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself.

“I don’t really want to lose track on what I am doing, I have stayed the same person the whole time, and I am only ever going to be that person.”

Former US Open champion Emma Raducanu is out of Wimbledon
Former US Open champion Emma Raducanu is out of Wimbledon (PA)

While Boulter has Wimbledon in her sights, Raducanu will be absent following wrist and ankle surgery.

The sidelined 20-year-old has struggled since her shock success at Flushing Meadows but Boulter believes those exploits have energised other British female players.

“If we didn’t have Emma then I don’t think that these girls would be pushing through and I’ve taken a lot of inspiration from her,” said Boulter.

“What she did was absolutely incredible and I don’t think it’ll ever be emulated again. It was quite the moment and she’s a very special girl.”