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Top-ranked Ashleigh Barty announces surprise retirement after Australian Open win

0428

Ashleigh Barty is calling it a career.

The Australian star announced on Instagram on Tuesday night that she is retiring from tennis, just two months after her win at the Australian Open.

“I’m so happy and I’m so ready and I just know at the moment, in my heart for me as a person, this is right,” Barty said in an interview with Casey Dellacqua. “I know I’ve done this before, but in a very different feeling. I’m so grateful to everything that tennis has given me. It’s given me all of my dreams, plus more. But I know the time is right now for me to step away and chase other dreams and to put the racquets down.”

Ash Barty retiring on top

The 25-year-old’s announcement comes right as she’s at the top of her game and the sport as a whole.

Barty, a three-time Grand Slam champion, is fresh off her win at the Australian Open in January, when she beat Danielle Collins and became the first Australian woman to win the singles title there in more than four decades. The 15-time winner also won the French Open in 2019 and then at Wimbledon last year, which is something she said really “changed my perspective.”

“I just had that gut feeling after Wimbledon … Then came the challenge of the Australian Open,” Barty said. “I think that for me feels like the most perfect way, my perfect way, to celebrate what an amazing journey my tennis career has been.”

Though Barty in theory had plenty of tennis left to play in her career, she said Tuesday that she was done.

She had accomplished everything she had set out to — winning at Wimbledon was “the one true dream that I wanted in tennis” — and she’s very content walking away.

“I’m fulfilled, I’m happy,” Barty said. “I know how much work it takes to bring the best out of yourself … I don’t have that in me anymore. I don’t have the physical drive, the emotional want and everything it takes to challenge yourself at the top of that level anymore. I am spent. I just know physically I have nothing more to give. That to me is success.”

Ashleigh Barty of Australia
Ashleigh Barty is calling it a career. (Graham Denholm/Getty Images)
Graham Denholm via Getty Images
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