Wimbledon: Barty relishing Kerber clash after winning all-Aussie battle on Centre Court

By Sports Desk July 06, 2021

Ash Barty set up a mouth-watering Wimbledon semi-final against Angelique Kerber by scoring a crushing win over Ajla Tomljanovic on Centre Court.

In the first all-Australian quarter-final at a grand slam since 1980, when Evonne Goolagong beat Wendy Turnbull at Wimbledon, Barty inflicted a 6-1 6-3 demolition in an hour and six minutes.

She is favourite for this title, looking to join compatriots Goolagong and Margaret Court by landing the Venus Rosewater Dish, and delivered a demonstration of dazzling grass-court tennis as Tomljanovic suffered.

Ten years have passed since Barty won the girls' title at Wimbledon, and at senior level her best performance until this fortnight was a fourth-round run two years ago.

Now though, the world number one looks in great shape to take the title on her favourite surface, and add to her tour-leading three titles in 2021, having previously won the Yarra Valley Classic, followed by Miami and Stuttgart.

From 6-1 4-1, there was a slight dip from Barty that gave world number 75 Tomljanovic some hope, but that was soon crushed, the top seed regaining authority with her ground shots and scoring another break before serving out, finishing with an ace.

"It's exciting. She was always going to bring out the very best in me," Barty said. "This is a dream come true, genuinely it is. This is my dream and I'm extremely grateful I've got an opportunity to come out here and have fun and live out what I worked so hard to do. I'm enjoying every minute."

Barty is bidding to become just the fourth women in the Open Era to follow up a junior title by becoming the women's singles champion at Wimbledon, after Ann Jones, Martina Hingis and Amelie Mauresmo.

Facing 2018 Wimbledon champion Kerber on Thursday will be the toughest examination yet of Barty's credentials to achieve that rare double.

"It's the ultimate test. Angie's obviously had success here before and had the best fortnight here possible," Barty said in her on-court interview.

"I love that match-up, I love playing Angie. She's an incredible competitor and knows her way around this court. I hope I can play well and give myself a chance and play a good match."

Data Slam: 

Since 1968, the women's top seed at Wimbledon has gone on to be champion 24 times and runner-up on eight occasions. By reaching the final four, Barty has guaranteed she will stay at number one in the WTA rankings, whatever the result of the Kerber showdown.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Barty – 23/22
Tomljanovic – 5/20

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Barty – 5/4
Tomljanovic – 2/2

BREAK POINTS WON

Barty – 6/11
Tomljanovic – 2/4

Related items

  • Paolini overcomes Riske to win first WTA singles title in Portoroz Paolini overcomes Riske to win first WTA singles title in Portoroz

    Jasmine Paolini battled to a straight-sets victory over Alison Riske in Sunday's Portoroz final to win her maiden WTA singles title.

    World number 87 Paolini had already eliminated three seeded players to reach her first final and she recovered from a slow start to see off another 7-6 (7-4) 6-2.

    Third seed Riske led 5-2 in the first set after breaking her opponent's serve three times in the opening seven games, but Paolini dug deep and took four games on the spin.

    The Italian used that momentum in the tie-break to open up a 5-2 advantage before getting over the line with her second set point.

    After a gruelling 63-minute opening set, Paolini found the second a more straightforward affair as she broke for 3-2 and reeled off the remaining games, the last of those points coming via an error-forcing forehand.

    Paolini, who won two-thirds of her second-service points and converted six of her 10 break points, is glad her hard work has paid off with a first singles success at the age of 25.

    "It's been an amazing week here in Portoroz," she said in her on-court interview. "I feel just very happy, it's a big achievement for me, to win my first title. It's special to do it on the hard court.

    "It wasn't easy to go through to the final. I'm proud of myself because I never gave up.

    "I'm working really hard in the past couple of months. I understood more about my game, I think. I just want to keep this level for all the season that is almost finished, and to stay strong and keep this level."

  • Tauson triumphs in Luxembourg as Ostapenko falls at final hurdle Tauson triumphs in Luxembourg as Ostapenko falls at final hurdle

    Teenager Clara Tauson defeated Jelena Ostapenko to claim her second WTA Tour title of the year at the Luxembourg Open. 

    Tauson, the last player to defeat US Open champion Emma Raducanu, had already knocked out Olympic silver medallist Marketa Vondrousova en route to the final before taking another big scalp in Sunday's showdown. 

    The defending champion from 2019, Ostapenko could not stop the 18-year-old Dane prevailing 6-3 4-6 6-4. 

    Tauson, who defeated Raducanu to win a Challenger event in Chicago prior to the final grand slam of the year in New York, where she was beaten by Ash Barty, struck eight aces and made just one double fault throughout the match. 

    Two breaks of serve saw her take the first set in just 30 minutes, though Ostapenko rallied in the second to force a decider. 

    However, the world number 70 had too much for her rival with the trophy on the line, immediately coming from a break down to haul herself level before breaking to take the match at the second opportunity. 

    Ostapenko was hunting a fifth career title, but the 2017 French Open champion has made it to just one other final in 2021, triumphing at Eastbourne prior to Wimbledon. 

  • Teenager Tauson finds form that saw off Raducanu to reach Luxembourg final Teenager Tauson finds form that saw off Raducanu to reach Luxembourg final

    Danish teenager Clara Tauson set up a Luxembourg Open final showdown with Jelena Ostapenko, showing off the prowess that saw her beat Emma Raducanu in Chicago prior to the US Open.

    Raducanu recovered from that setback in the final of August's Challenger tournament in the Windy City, charging to a shock Flushing Meadows triumph, but fellow 18-year-old Tauson awaits her big breakthrough at the majors.

    Tauson took down a former French Open runner-up and current Olympic silver medallist in reaching the Luxembourg final, beating Marketa Vondrousova in three sets, and now must overcome a player who has been champion at Roland Garros in Ostapenko.

    She prised the vital break of serve in the ninth game of the decider against Vondrousova, upping the power in her shots, before serving out for a 6-4 2-6 6-4 victory.

    Tauson will be going for a second title of the year, having won the Lyon Open in March.

    Defending champion Ostapenko raced to a 6-1 5-1 lead over Liudmila Samsonova but then began to misfire and had to scramble from the brink of being taken to a third set.

    Ostapenko eventually prevailed 6-1 7-6 (7-4), having trailed 4-1 in the tie-break, and she will attempt to scoop a fifth WTA title on Sunday. Her most recent came at Eastbourne in the week before Wimbledon.

    At the WTA tournament in the Slovenian town of Portoroz, Sunday's final will feature American Alison Riske and Italy's Jasmine Paolini.

    Riske denied Slovenian Kaja Juvan a place in a home final, earning a 6-0 6-4 win in their semi-final, while Paolini sprang a shock by beating Kazakhstan's Yulia Putintseva 1-6 6-3 6-4.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.