Barty breaks her home soil duck to win Adelaide International

Australia World

Updated January 18, 2020 22:00:20

Ash Barty has won her first-ever WTA tournament on home soil, beating Ukraine’s Dayana Yastremska in straight sets to clinch the Adelaide International.

Key points:

  • Ash Barty had previously lost two finals on Australian soil, both in the Sydney International in 2018 and 2019
  • Barty breezed through the first set after breaking Dayana Yastremska early, but the Ukrainian battled back to make things tougher in the second set
  • The Australian will face another Ukranian — Lesia Tsurenko — in the first round of the Australian Open on Monday.

Barty won in 85 minutes 6-2, 7-5 in an excellent preparation for the year’s opening grand slam event, the Australian Open, starting on Monday in Melbourne.

She had lost her two previous finals on home soil — a nailbiter against Petra Kvitova in the 2019 Sydney International after a straight-sets loss to Angelique Kerber in the 2018 tournament.

“This is incredible … a great start to the year,” Barty said.

“I definitely feel the love out here, I love playing in Australia, I love playing at home, it’s been incredible for my team to enjoy this week.

“It was nice to get the ball rolling this week … and I can’t wait to get started in Melbourne on Monday.”

After both players held serve in their opening games of the first set, Barty drew first blood early by breaking the Ukranian to love. Barty then consolidated the break, forcing Yastremska on the back foot with fantastic net play.

Barty broke again to lead 5-2 in a long wait for a Yastremska mistake on serve, before taking out the set in 30 minutes.

Straight away, the Australian broke Yastremska’s serve in the first game of the second set, only for Yastremska to battle back with a break of her own as her own service game settled.

Both players hung tough and relentlessly held serve in the second set, putting Barty under pressure when she trailed 5-4.

But she held serve in gritty fashion, before powering through to break Yastremska to love and lead 6-5.

That was all the opportunity Barty needed, sealing the deal on serve to win the title.

Barty’s summer lead up to the Australian Open has been anything but straight forward, losing in straight sets in her opening match at the Brisbane International.

She followed that up with hard-working wins over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in Adelaide and a straight-sets victory over Marketa Vondrousova, before a tough semi-final win over the US’s Danielle Collins.

Barty will face off against another Ukrainian in the opening round of the Australian Open on Monday, taking on world number 120 Lesia Tsurenko as she looks to better her run to the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park last year.

In the Adelaide International’s men’s final, Russia’s world number 18 Andrey Rublev followed up a win in last week’s ATP tournament in Doha with victory over South Africa’s Lloyd Harris, winning 6-3, 6-0.

Topics: tennis, sport, adelaide-5000, sa, australia, ukraine

First posted January 18, 2020 18:50:57