Paradorn is Asia's first to break into top 10

BANGKOK: Thailand yesterday hailed its national sports hero Paradorn Srichaphan as he became the first Asian ever to break into the top 10 of the world tennis rankings. 

The charismatic 23-year-old Asian champion confirmed his status as the continent’s best-ever player when he was ranked 10th in the latest ATP rankings, besting the exploits of India’s Vijay Amritraj, who earned a 16th ranking back in 1980. 

He moved up one spot from 11th and now has 1,885 points -- 66 points behind the Czech Republic’s Jiri Novak. 

“It is great news for our sport, and it is an honour because he is the first Asian to be in the top 10,” Suwat Liptapanlop, chairman of the Lawn Tennis Association of Thailand (LTAT), told AFP. 

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