Barty wins first Aussie Open – Day 13 Australian Open.

Ultimately, this doesn’t come as a massive surprise, the world number one and most in-form player has won the event. The ease at which she has steamrolled through the draw probably was though. Today she was given by far and away her toughest match of the event where she got broke several times and had to come back from a 1-5 deficit in the second set. It was all going to plan in the first with the single break of serve being enough to win it 6-3. The second had a very different ring to it. The nerves that I have kept harping on about started to surface, there were double faults and tentativeness on show and Collins started to hit the mark with her aggressive shots. It would have been easy to buckle for the top seed and at the very least throw in the towel for the remainder of the set and get on with the decider. Instead, she reset and cranked her level back up and the American couldn’t go with it. The Australian’s serve, depth and variation of slice and forehand were all finding their mark again and they did not cease for the remainder of the contest. Collins did manage to get into a tiebreak but it was where some wild errors crept in from her and Barty was not going to need a second invitation.

It is a third slim title for Barty and the only one that eludes her now is the US Open, meaning she has won a slam on each surface. You would think there will be more to follow. Collins showed great appreciation at the end saying, “It’s been tremendous to watch her climb the rankings all the way up to number one, and live out her dream, and I really admire you as the player that you are and the variety of your game, and hopefully I can implement some of that into mine.” She also thanked the physios and medical staff for getting her through the fortnight. I have to give a special mention to Ash Barty’s fiance, Garry Kissick who was once again seen sporting a Liverpool FC cap, good lad, up the reds!! On her victory Barty said, “I’ve said numerous times I’m so lucky to have so many people here that love me, support me, pretty bloody special that Mum, Dad, and my sisters are here, I’m pretty rapt with that that they could come down here today.” I do not think there are any questions that this is a really nice person and worthy champion.

Nick Kyrgios is officially a grand slam champion having won the doubles with Thanasi Kokkinakis, they saw off fellow countrymen Matty Ebden and Max Purcell in straight sets. Both players said they are both pleased to put a rough few years (for different reasons) behind them. Who would have thought a fortnight ago that these two would lift the trophy at the end of the championships? The vociferous support they have received hasn’t been everyone’s cup of tea but fair play it is a great effort from the pair of them.

Al Davies (Andy Del Potro).

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