Ashleigh Barty news: ‘It’s pretty bloody special,’ says ‘proud’ Aussie in touching tribute

Ashleigh Barty ready to kiss the Australian Open women's trophy

It was a dream come true for Ashleigh Barty after she lifted her first Australian Open trophy to become Australia’s first home women’s champion in 44 years.

Barty has been the best player on the WTA Tour for the best part of three years and she took her Grand Slam tally to three with a three-set victory over American Danielle Collins.

When she won Wimbledon last year, not too many of her family and friends were in the stands to witness her achievement due to Covid-19 restrictions, but they were all out at Rod Laver Arena on Saturday.

After being handed the trophy by her idol Evonne Goolagong, the 25-year-old paid tribute to her team and family after her latest major success.

“To my team, wow,” she said. “I’ve said numerous times that I’m so lucky tonight to have so many people here that love and support me.

“It’s pretty bloody special that mum, dad and my sisters are in here. I’m pretty rapt that they could come down today.

“I’m an incredibly fortunate girl to have so much love in my corner. We started together right from the start in this second part of our career.

“We did it all together. No one has changed from our tea. It’s been incredible. I love you guys to death. You are the absolute best in the business.”

She added: “This is just a dream come true.

“I’m so proud of being an Aussie so thank you so much everyone and see you next time.”