WORLD No.1 and consummate team player, Ashleigh Barty won’t be ditching doubles in pursuit of individual honours in 2020.
Barty will carry a “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach into the summer of tennis as she promises to lay it all on the line in her much-hyped quest for Australian Open glory.
And that includes playing doubles with her best mates on tour.
Barty reached all four grand slam doubles finals with “best mate” Casey Dellacqua before landing her maiden singles major at last year’s French Open in Paris.
As if being Australia’s first women’s top seed at the Open in 43 years isn’t enough pressure, Barty will also arrive in Melbourne bidding to become the first world No.1 to hoist the trophy since the great Serena Williams in 2015.
Such is the depth in women’s tennis that Simona Halep at the 2018 French Open is the only other top seed apart from Williams in the past 20 grand slams to claim the title.
Not that Australia’s casual sports fans will care too much as they yearn for the hugely popular Barty to end the 41-year Open title drought.
“There shouldn’t be any assumptions,” Barty said on Thursday.
“There are no certainties in sport and I think that’s the beauty of sport – anyone can be beaten on any given day and it’s about preparing and doing the best you can do on that day.
“I can’t wait to play in front of the Aussie crowd again and go out there and give it my all. Regardless of whether I win or I lose, I think the Aussie public love the fact when Aussie players come out and just give it a crack.
“That’s what I can promise. I will go out there and give it my best and whatever happens, happens.”