Wimbledon Welcomes Back Springfield Tennis Legend Ash Barty

Wimbledon Welcomes Back Springfield Tennis Legend Ash Barty
Photo Credit: Instagram/Ash Barty

Former world No. 1 and Springfield-raised Ash Barty is set to make a highly anticipated return to Wimbledon this July, nearly two years after her shock retirement from professional tennis. The 28-year-old Australian tennis legend will participate in the invitational doubles event, marking her first appearance on the hallowed grass courts since her triumphant singles victory in 2021.

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Invitational Doubles comeback

Wimbledon officials recently announced Barty’s participation in the legends invitational doubles event, scheduled to begin on July 9.

Barty will team up with her former doubles partner and close friend, Casey Dellacqua. The pair, affectionately known as “ABCD” (Ash Barty and Casey Dellacqua), have a history of success, including reaching three grand slam finals together.

The legends tournament will feature two groups of eight pairs competing in a round-robin format. The top pairs from each group will advance to the final, vying for a share of the ~$64,800 first-place prize. All participating pairs are guaranteed a minimum of ~$45,800 between them.

Ash Barty, legend of tennis

Ash Barty’s 2021 Wimbledon victory ended a 41-year drought for Australian women at the tournament, following in the footsteps of her mentor and idol, Evonne Goolagong Cawley, who won in 1980.

The Woodcrest State College alum also claimed grand slam titles at the 2019 French Open and the 2022 Australian Open before her surprise retirement announcement in March 2022.

Since stepping away from professional tennis, Barty has embraced family life. She married her partner Garry Kissick and welcomed their son, Hayden. Despite occasional calls for her return to the professional circuit, Barty has consistently expressed contentment with her current priorities. “I absolutely love being a mum. There’s nothing else that I prefer to do,” she said.

Dual role at Wimbledon

In addition to her participation in the invitationals, Barty will also serve as a commentator during the Wimbledon tournament.

This dual role allows her to remain connected to the sport while maintaining her retirement from professional play.

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The Wimbledon tournament, including the legends invitational event, is set to begin on Monday, July 1, offering fans a chance to see their hometown hero back in action on one of tennis’s most prestigious stages.

Published 22-June-2024