Ashleigh Barty resumed her tennis career after a two-year break to play professional cricket and at her comeback tournament in Eastbourne 2016 she went all the way to the semifinals as an unranked player. Fast forward three years, the Australian 23-year-old climbed to the number one by clinching the Nature Valley Classic title and becoming the only player so far in 2019 who has won three WTA singles titles.
After being unranked in May 2016, Barty finished that year at No.325, at the end of 2017 she was already No.17, No.15 was her year-end ranking in 2018, and in June 2019 she rose to the top of the WTA world, dethroning Naomi Osaka who had occupied the position for 21 weeks, since January.
Prior to Birmingham, Barty won her maiden Grand Slam title at Roland Garros, so she’s now on a 12-match winning-streak and also leads the tour in the number of wins this season, with 36 victories to 5 losses. With Wimbledon being just a week away, Barty has withdrawn from Eastbourne citing a right arm injury.
Since computer rankings were introduced in late 1975, Barty is the 27th woman to ascend to world No.1 and second Australian woman to occupy the prestigious spot, following Evonne Goolagong Cawley on April 26, 1976.
Besides tremendous success in singles, Barty is not neglecting doubles — she currently holds the No.7 ranking and has won 10 career WTA doubles titles, including the 2018 US Open and Miami Open trophies, both with CoCo Vandeweghe. As you know, during her career-defining week on the grass of Birmingham, besides dominating in singles, Barty also reached the doubles semifinals with Julia Goerges, but they decided not to play that match since both advanced to the singles final and had to be ready for it.