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‘Never say never’ – Ash Barty refusing to rule out return to WTA Tour

After announcing her retirement, Ash Barty has refused to rule out a return to the sport and has also remained tight-lipped on her future plans, telling reporters to “wait and see.”

Three-time Grand Slam ace and women’s World number one Ash Barty recently shocked the tennis world when she announced her retirement at the age of just 25 years old earlier this week.

In an emotional Instagram post, Barty revealed she had achieved her dreams and said “now was the right time to step away and chase other dreams.”

When asked about the prospects of a potential return to the WTA Tour in a press conference in Brisbane, Barty refused to rule out the possibility, saying “well, you never say never, it’s a long way off!”

She was also asked about whether she would pursue a career in yet another professional sport, such as golf or Australian Rules Football.

Back in 2014, a then 18-year-old Barty took an indefinite break, during which she played professional cricket for Brisbane Heat in the Women’s Big Bash League in 2015 and 2016.

On another potential career change, Barty remained coy, saying “I love sport. I’m a sport nut, like a lot of Australians are. I’ll be lured to it.

“I have always been an athlete in the sense of trying different things but we’ll see how we go.

She was also questioned on her next steps, but Barty again remained tight-lipped, saying “you have to wait and see.

“I’m not giving you everything right now. It’s alright. You can be patient. Patience is a virtue!” she emphasised.

“I’m excited for what’s next. For my next chapter as Ash Barty the person and not the athlete. I hit as recently as 10 days ago. So I will forever be connected to tennis. I’ll never stop loving the sport. I’ll never stop hitting tennis balls.

“I just want to be doing it selfishly for me. I can’t wait to get out there with young boys and young girls and contribute in different ways,” Barty hinted at a potential venture into coaching.

“I’m really excited to have more time to do that, and I can’t wait to get on the court and teach my nieces and nephews and hope it brings them the same love that it brought me.”

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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.