Ashleigh Barty: "We created a bubble to train safely"

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Ashleigh Barty: "We created a bubble to train safely"

World number one Ashleigh Barty is ready for a busy Australian summer. After an exceptional 2019 that saw her win the Roland Garros, the WTA Finals in Shenzhen, and finish the season as the second Australian to hold the topspot of the women's ranking, Barty had started 2020 with a title race in Adelaide and semi-finals at the Australian Open and the Qatar Total Open.

WTA Insider caught up with Barty on the phone from Melbourne, where the Aussie is fine-tuning her game before heading to Adelaide for A Day at the Drive, an exhibition event alongside Serena Williams, Simona Halep and Naomi Osaka.

Barty's words from the interview

Barty told: "When did I seriously start my preseason? Early October. It's been a long pre-season and I've probably gotten a little impatient in the last three or four weeks because I want to get back on the court.

But all in all it was undoubtedly a unique year for everyone, a unique preparation for everyone. It was a bit complicated with everyone but I feel ready to go again. I continued my training off the court all year and found the enthusiasm to train again.

When I wasn't hitting the tennis balls I found several ways to train and stay active. But blisters on his hands and feet were the biggest things the first month back on the court. It was a good progression. I'm lucky to have a manager like Tyzz, who worked his way through many pre-seasons before.

Knowing how to set them is really important, not to rush too much in the beginning and to know that there is a hard time when you have pain but you have to resist. Now I feel good, ready to play my best tennis. At first, I think everyone in the world had that anxiety.

So I think it was pretty normal and it was okay to hear it in the beginning. The first two months I barely grabbed a racket and enjoyed that forced break. I have found that I spend time with my family and all the things I have at home.

Tennis isn't the only thing in the world that gives me happiness. Being able to be in that beautiful place with my family, being at home, spending time with those I love most was absolutely more than enough for me. Having that outlook throughout the year has been brilliant.

I certainly lost the rhythm of the competition. There have been times when we have had to make some really difficult decisions, but I feel we have made them for the right reasons. My team and I believe in the same values ​​and we know that if we make the right decisions for the right reasons, everything will be fine in the end.

About the preparation for the Australian Open, everyone is in a different situation and everyone has different challenges, of course. It was important for us to play with some of the other Aussie girls that I haven't seen much in the last 12 months who live here in Melbourne. We made a little mini bubble ourselves, which was great."