Kate Middleton greets tennis fans during trip to Wimbledon
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Ash Barty’s tennis career ‘wasn’t easy’ according to former US Open champion Tracy Austin. The Aussie is the Wimbledon champion but took a two-year break from the tour in 2014 after struggling with the pressures of playing professional tennis.
The world No 1 won a seesaw Wimbledon final against Karolina Pliskova in three sets.
It’s Barty’s second Grand Slam triumph after winning the 2019 French Open.
But her route to success has been far from straightforward having quit the professional game for two years after the 2014 US Open.
And her difficult journey to the top has been acknowledged by Tracy Austin in the wake of her Wimbledon success.
Speaking to the BBC, she said: “This is a young lady who had done so well in doubles but took herself off the tour for a couple of years because of her mental health.
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“She wasn’t enjoying it being away from her family, so far away from Australia, so it was a big commitment for her to bring this team with her.
“They were so critical to her development and her commitment to come back to play.
“it’s just an extra special because it wasn’t easy for her, there were ups and downs, she took up cricket for goodness sake!”
The American also praised Barty’s coach Craig Tizer for the commitment he has shown over what must have been a tough period away from home.
She added: “For Craig Tizer to make that commitment to leave his family as well.
“In March, apparently there were loads of tears because they knew it was going to be about eight months before they would be coming back.
“They’ve had to quarantine in Australia for a couple of weeks, which is very tough on an athlete so she’s made that huge commitment after not playing for 11 months.
“It all started at Wimbledon is winning the juniors and now 10 years later it’s come full circle.”
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