World No.1 Ashleigh Barty has announced her shock retirement at the age of just 25. The Australian had took several breaks over the COVID-19 period of tennis but established herself as the best player on tour with a stunning all-round game.
She was last seen on court at the Australian Open, taking the title with a straight sets win over Danielle Collins to complete one of the most dominant slam runs of all the time. She would have been one of the favourites to win the US Open again this year to complete her career grand slam and the same has to apply to Wimbledon and the French Open too.
She detailed the announcement in a lengthy Instagram video with good friend Casey Dellacqua. “I don’t have the physical drive, the emotional want and everything it takes to challenge yourself at the very top of the level any more. I am spent,” she said during it.
Barty was an incredibly popular player across both tours as shown by the great number of tributes paid to her. Petra Kvitova, Andy Murray, Simona Halep and Serena Williams were just a few of the stars who talked glowingly about the Australian.
Rumours are swirling as to Barty’s next move with many looking to the golf course with her already being a handy player at the sport. It would remain an incredibly difficult goal but just shows the level of talent that she possesses that the possibility of playing three sports at the highest level is a thing.
Barty also said she will relinquish her ranking place at the next update so there will be a new No.1 immediately. At No.2 currently is Iga Swiatek, who is one of the top performers on the tour this year. “If it is Iga, there is no better person. She’s an incredible person, a great tennis player. The way that she’s brought this fresh, fearless energy on to the court has been incredible.” she said.
To see all our predictions for upcoming matches, based on our machine learning model analysing results since 1960, see our tennis predictions page here.