For the third time in her career, Ashleigh Barty is a champion on home soil.
The World No.1 rolled past No.7 seed Elena Rybakina 6-3, 6-2 at the Adelaide International 1 on Sunday to capture the title in South Australia for the second time in the past three years. Later, Barty teamed with Storm Sanders to win the doubles as well, defeating Darija Jurak Schreiber and Andreja Klepac 6-1, 6-4 to complete the sweep.
Barty and Rybakina were evenly matched over the first six games, but the match quickly turned on the back of a crucial hold of serve by Barty at 3-3. After digging out of 15-40, Barty ran off seven straight games and wrapped up her 14th WTA singles title in a tidy 64 minutes.
"We've obviously had a brilliant week, been able to work progressively through each match," Barty said after the match. "I got better and better. I felt like today there were really a few key moments early in the first set to gain momentum. I was really happy to be able to get a couple of early breaks in the second and run away with it."
Barty has now won 17 of her past 18 matches against Top 20 players and improves to 2-0 against Rybakina all-time with the victory. She's also won 21 of her past 24 matches in Australia.
Turning point: In the aforementioned crucial Barty service game in the first set, Rybakina won the point of the match at 15-15 and a double fault gave the Kazakh two chances to lead 4-3.
We've got ourselves a match 🍿— wta (@WTA) January 9, 2022
Rybakina coming out firing against the world No.1! #AdelaideTennis pic.twitter.com/T0HnfsZFpU
A missed forehand from Rybakina and a Barty ace brought the World No.1 back to deuce, and she hardly looked back from then on.
Serving up victory: After a second-round victory against Coco Gauff, where she came from a set and a break down to win, Barty never lost serve again in the tournament — a streak of 35 consecutive games.
In her past three rounds, against Sofia Kenin, Iga Swiatek and Rybakina, Barty served up a combined 28 aces and saved all four break points she faced.
How's that to start a season? 😉@ashbarty is your 2022 Adelaide International champion! 🏆 pic.twitter.com/ZARSmhgUkY— wta (@WTA) January 9, 2022
Against Rybakina, Barty lost just 13 points in nine service games overall, hitting 17 winners to 13 unforced errors.
"I probably felt like overall this week my serve has been a real weapon," Barty said. "I felt like I struggled with rhythm early on in the week and I've been able to progressively get better and better. To go a few matches unbroken is really good."
Barty on track for the Australian Open: "I feel good leading up to an Australian Open like I have every year," Barty said. "Each and every preparation is unique, each and every preparation is different. So we take it for what comes and what it is, move on, try and do the best that we can in every opportunity, whether that's here in Adelaide or it's in Melbourne.
"It has absolutely no effect on the way that I prepare or the way I'm thinking leading forward just because it's a Grand Slam. Doesn't change for us. We look forward, we do what we can, then we see how we go."
Barty Sweeps in Adelaide.— WTA Insider (@WTA_insider) January 9, 2022
Ash Barty and Storm Sanders take the #AdelaideTennis doubles title with a 61 64 win over Jurak/Klepac.
Barty sweeps the singles and doubles at a tournament for the 2nd straight season, having done so at 2021 Stuttgart. pic.twitter.com/fHCEZSrX5T
Barty and Sanders dominate the doubles: After sealing the singles title, Barty capped off a perfect opening week by capturing her 12th doubles title. Partnering with Sanders, the Australian duo dominated the 61 minute final over No.3 seeds Jurak and Klepac. The win was Sanders' third career doubles title and first partnering with Barty.