Baker produces his top form to win Malta trophy

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Blu Baker delivered the best performance of his fledgling career so far as he earned ranking success in Malta.

The highly-talented Portsmouth Tennis Academy starlet, 12, has been competing hard this summer.

He’s performed in Turkey, Slovenia and Romania, as well securing a sensational victory in Malta.

Baker is based out in Florida, USA, where he trains at the Gomez Tennis Academy.

But he’s been back home for the summer, in between flying around Europe for tournaments.

The busy schedule has seen Baker climb to second in the country in the under-13 group rankings.

He’s been playing two years up in the tournaments and to win in Malta was a stunning success.

In the final, Baker came back from 3-1 down in the deciding set to secure a brilliant 7-5 victory.

He said: ‘I enjoy competing and I love to win.

‘The Malta final was the best match I have played in my life. I don’t know what happened.

‘When I went 3-1 down in the third set I had to bite the bullet and just go for it.

‘I got a little bit wound up in the second set, with some of the decisions that went against me. I wanted to win so much.

‘It was a huge match. It was the best feeling ever when I won match point.’

As well as winning in Malta, Baker has also reached the second round in the three other international tournaments he has competed in.

That gives him a European Tennis Association record of nine wins and only three defeats this summer.

It shows Baker’s game is in great shape and the work he’s putting in with his coaches, dad Kevin, and Rene Gomez, in Florida, is clearly paying off.

Baker said: ‘It’s pretty big to win an international tournament at 12 – to win a 14 tournament. It’s an amazing feeling.

‘Rene and my dad really, really help me. I’m really confident about my game.

‘I’m never, ever defensive. I’m always aggressive.’

Baker’s dad Kevin is pleased with the way his son is progressing.

He said: ‘He’s had to travel on the road to Eastern Europe this summer and it’s been pretty tough.

‘Romania was particularly tough but it has not bothered Blu at all.

‘It’s a very, very interesting experience for us.

‘In the final in Malta he took on an Italian boy, who had knocked out the number one seed in the first round.

‘From 3-1 down in the final set, he played amazingly aggressively.’

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