Ash Barty Australian Open 2021

‘Exciting to see for women’s tennis’ – Ashleigh Barty praises competitive nature of the WTA tour

Ashleigh Barty admires the quality of the competition on the women’s circuit, saying “you have to bring your best” to stand a chance of winning silverware.

The quality of the WTA tour in recent years has meant that since 2017 no player has won more than a single Grand Slam in a season. Angelique Kerber was the last player to win two Slams in a season in 2016 when she won the Australian Open and the US Open.

This tight competition has been noted by two-time Grand Slam winner and World number three Garbine Muguruza, who claimed the women’s circuit is “no longer the domain of Serena Williams.”

Now, two-time Slam champion Barty has echoed Muguruza’s observations and has also commended the quality of the women’s tour.

Moreover, 19-year-olds Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez also enjoyed impressive breakthrough seasons. The two promising youngsters faced each other in the US Open final where Raducanu emerged victorious to become the first qualifier to ever win a Grand Slam.

Barty told reporters ahead of the Adelaide International that “there’s fresh challengers every year regardless of who is what spot on the ranking list.

“There were certainly a number of breakout years through 2021, girls really stepped up, were able to play really consistent seasons which is exciting to see for the women’s game.

“It feels like it’s just good competition. Genuinely there is really good depth and you have to bring your best time and time again to be able to compete with everyone and give yourself a chance to win the big titles.”

Similarly, fellow two-time Slam winner Simona Halep said “I think it’s different from five years ago. I think it’s more open and the teenagers have the extra power to win the big tournaments. It’s very difficult every time you play. First round, second round, semi-finals, the level is pretty similar.

“I think it’s a good thing. It’s a positive for tennis. I didn’t watch much last year because of the injury, but I saw some results. It’s going to be pretty interesting this year. I’m looking forward to it, to see if I can stick around.”

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.