Australian Barty becomes women's world number one

After picking up the Birmingham Classic grasscourt title, Ashleigh Barty will displace Naomi Osaka as women's world number one when the new WTA rankings are released on Monday.

Ashleigh Barty acknowledges the crowd following her victory against Julia Georges.   -  Getty Images

Ashleigh Barty will become the first Australian in 43 years to climb to the top of the WTA singles ranking after she won the Birmingham Classic grasscourt title on Sunday.

The 23-year-old beat Germany's Julia Goerges 6-3, 7-5 in the final, meaning when the new WTA rankings are released on Monday she will knock Japan's Naomi Osaka off the summit.

French Open champion Barty gave up tennis in late 2014 and played Big Bash cricket for Brisbane Heat before returning to the sport in 2016.

The last Australian woman to reach the number one ranking was Evonne Goolagong in 1976 although it only came to light 31 years later after the discovery of an error in the records.

 

FACTBOX

Born: April 24, 1996 in Ipswich, Australia (age 23)

Grand Slam titles: 1 (French Open 2019)

Early life and background

She began playing tennis aged five when parents Robert and Josie introduced her to the sport.

Won her only junior Grand Slam title at Wimbledon in 2011.

Her father is an Ngarigo Indigenous Australian through one of his grandmothers and Barty is a campaigner for indigenous Australians.

Career to date

*After starting her career on the ITF circuit in Australia in 2010, she played her first WTA qualifying event at the U.S. Open the following year.

*Claimed four singles titles and two doubles titles on the ITF circuit in 2012.

*Won one WTA doubles title and reached three Grand Slam doubles finals with Casey Dellacqua in 2013 (Australian Open, Wimbledon, U.S. Open). Captured two ITF doubles titles.

*After winning another WTA doubles title in 2014, she took a break from tennis following the U.S. Open and had a successful stint at the Brisbane Heat cricket team in the Women's Big Bash League, before returning in 2016.

*Broke into the top 20 in 2017, clinching her first WTA singles title at Kuala Lumpur as a qualifier. She reached two more singles finals, at Birmingham and Wuhan, before becoming Australia's number one player.

*Won her second and third WTA singles titles at Nottingham and Zhuhai to finish 2018 ranked 15 in the world. Claimed four more doubles titles.

*Sealed her first title of 2019 at Miami in March before clinching her maiden Grand Slam at the French Open.

*Claimed her third title of the year in Birmingham and will displace Japan's Naomi Osaka at the top of the rankings on Monday to emulate compatriot Evonne Goolagong's feat from 1976.