Ashleigh Barty

Ashleigh Barty, Australian tennis champion, 1996-present

The winner of three Grand Slam singles titles, “Ash” Barty is only the second Australian woman to be ranked number 1 in the world, following in the footsteps of her idol fellow Australian Indigenous tennis star Yvonne Gollagong Cawley. Two months after winning the Australian Open in Melbourne in 2022, and while ranked number 1, she retired from tennis at the age of 26, going out on a high. She was the first Australian woman to win that Grand Slam in singles in 44 years, and Vogue Australia featured her on the cover of a collector’s edition in a white pleated minidress with the coverline “Ash Barty. In love with the Australian champion both on and off the court.”

Born in Ipswich, Barty’s father was a member of the Ngarugu community and her mother was of English descent. She took to tennis at the age of four, hitting a ball against her garage wall for hours with an old wooden racquet. When she was nine, she preferred to compete against teenage boys. Although her older sisters also played tennis, the family could not afford training for all three, so Barty, the natural talent, went forward in the sport. Barty won the Wimbledon Juniors in 2011 at the age of 15. A well-rounded athlete, she took a break from tennis and played cricket professionally during the 2016-2017 season before returning to tennis, going pro in 2019. She quickly became famous for her sliced backhand.

During her career, she was sponsored by Vegemite and won nearly $24 million in prize money. She met her pro-golfer husband on the golf course. After dating for 6 years, they married in a private Queensland ceremony in July 2022 where she carried a bouquet of all-white roses and wore a dress by the Australian couturier Suzanne Harward. Since retiring, her projects have included promoting her children’s picture book series called Little Ash. Although she does not live extravagantly and enjoys birdwatching and surfing, she has admitted to being a fan of Jaguar cars. Barty’s father is protective and proud, and displays most of her trophies in his office.


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