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Ashleigh Barty claims World No.1 title

24 June 2019

Ashleigh Barty has claimed the No.1 Women’s World Tennis Ranking after a straight-set victory over German Julia Goerges in the Nature Valley Classic final in Birmingham, England.

Coming into the tournament, Ash was ranked No.2 after a career topping performance at the French Open where she won her first Grand Slam title. She’s become the first Australian women to rise to No.1 since Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1976 (43 years), and is the first Australian to hold the No.1 title since Lleyton Hewitt in 2003.

Born in 1996 in Ipswich, the Queenslander began playing tennis at the age of five. She was a sporting star from a young age, playing older age groups and winning tournament after tournament. In 2011 at the age of 15 she won the Wimbledon girls’ singles title after beating Irina Khromacheva in the final. The following year in 2012, Ash made her WTA debut at the Brisbane International and went on to secure a wildcard for her first Grand Slam event at the 2012 Australian Open. As part of the ITF Futures Pro Tour in 2012, Ash had a great year, she claimed her maiden tour win on home soil in Sydney and followed up with wins in Mildura and Nottingham.

After sacrificing her childhood and teenage years, it became too much and Ash stepped away from tennis in late 2014. Still having a love for sport, she briefly pursued a career in cricket where she joined the Brisbane Heat in the women’s Big Bash League.

Realising her passion for tennis and gaining the family and down-time which she lacked in her teenage years, Ash made a comeback in late May 2016 as an unranked player, starting from the bottom and since then her career has skyrocketed, making her comeback the stuff of sporting legends. Within six months, she gained a ranking of 325. Just a year later on 6 March 2017, Ash cracked the top 100 at world No.92.

Going from strength to strength, the Queenslander wasn’t expecting to achieve what she so gracefully has. "I’m a little bit speechless at the moment – it’s been a whirlwind few weeks for me. It’s been a whirlwind year," Barty said during the on-court presentation.

"It’s just been the most incredible journey for myself and my team. You always dream of it (being No.1) as a little kid, but for it to become reality is incredible. It really is.

"It’s not something that was even in my realm – this year we were aiming for top 10 and now to be where we are, it’s a testament to all of the people around me. I have the most incredible team of people who have been with me these last three years.

"We started from scratch three and a half years ago and now to be where we are, not only for me, it’s a massive achievement for them."

The Grand Slam champion did not drop a set all week in Birmingham and has moved her winning streak on to 12 as she moves on to Wimbledon as the number 1 seed.

Congratulations to Ash and her team on their unforgettable No.1 World ranking.

Quotes from Tennis Australia

Last updated
24 June 2019