Australian Open 2020: Ash Barty press conference; video; Sofia Kenin; baby olivia
Ash Barty had four set points that she didn’t convert.
She had a shot at a maiden finals berth at her home Open, but it went begging..
Yet there was one thing the 23-year-old had in spades after her shock 7(8)-6, 7-5 loss to American Sofia Kenin on Thursday: “perspective”. It’s a word she’s often turned to – and lived by – since reviving her tennis career to become one of the most respected and well like players on the women’s circuit.
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That “perspective” was evident from the moment Barty walked into her post-match press conference, carrying her baby niece, Olivia.
“This is what life is all about. It’s amazing,” Barty said, baby in her arms.
“It’s my newest niece. My sister just had her about 11, 12 weeks ago.
“I mean, perspective is a beautiful thing. Life is a beautiful thing. She brought a smile to my face as soon as I came off the court. I got to give her a hug. It’s all good. It’s all good.”
Barty seemed to have accepted her fate in the immediate aftermath of her loss on Rod Laver Arena.
“I think (it was) a match where I didn’t feel super comfortable,” Barty said.
“I felt like my first plan wasn’t working. I couldn’t execute the way that I wanted. I tried to go to B and C.
“I think I had to dig and find a way. I mean, I’m two points away from winning that in straight sets, which is disappointing. Knowing I had to fight and scrap, I still gave myself a chance to win the match.”
There was no doubt Barty appreciated her missed opportunity.
But she was also conscious of the great start to 2020 she now had under her belt. Making the final four at a major is nothing to turn your nose up at.
“It’s been a hell of a summer,” Barty said.
“I mean, if you would have told me three weeks ago that we would have won a tournament in Adelaide, made the semi-finals of the Australian Open, I’d take that absolutely every single day of the week.
“But I put myself in a position to win the match today and just didn’t play the biggest points well enough to be able to win.
“I have to give credit where credit’s due. Sofia came out and played aggressively on those points and deserved to win.”