KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - The loquacious Ashleigh Barty was uncharacteristically short of words after winning her first singles title at the ALYA Malaysian Open.
After dropping only one set as she came through qualifying to win the final in Kuala Lumpur, the Australian has had a bright start to 2017 - all the more remarkable considering that she took a year out to play cricket in the Women's Big Bash League for Brisbane Heat.
"I think it's been a success for us, the start [of 2017], more successful than we thought," she said after the match. "It's a tribute to all the work we did in the offseason, and last year, coming back. It hasn't quite been 12 months since I started playing singles again. I'm certainly happy to be back."
? WTA (@WTA) March 5, 2017
In the final, the 20-year-old took down Nao Hibino, a player she knows well from their time in junior tournaments - and beat her comfortably as well, 6-3, 6-2.
"Nao is playing an amazing week, had some fantastic results," said Barty. "I was ready to go and did the best that I could tonight - and thankfully it was enough to get over the line."