Ashleigh Barty caps off an impeccable spring surge with a maiden major title at Roland Garros, ousting fellow first-time Grand Slam finalist Marketa Vondrousova in straight sets to become the first Australian major champion since 2011.
David Kane
June 8, 2019

PARIS, France - Miami Open champion Ashleigh Barty bookends her breakthrough spring with a first Grand Slam title at Roland Garros, dispatching fellow major finals debutante Marketa Vondrousova, 6-1, 6-3.

GALLERY: Story of the Semis - Barty, Vondrousova set up 2019 Roland Garros final

The 23-year-old Aussie becomes the first from her country to win a major singles title since Samantha Stosur at the 2011 US Open, securing victory after 70 minutes on Court Philippe-Chatrier.

"It's remarkable," Barty said in her post-match press conference. "At the moment it's a bit too much and a bit out there, really. But it's amazing. I mean, we have done the work, and we tried to put ourselves in these positions. Now that we're here, it's just incredible."

Set to rise to a new career-high ranking of World No.2 following this tournament, Barty was three games from defeat in the semifinals against on-fire American Amanda Anisimova, and was faced with the task of defeating another inspired teenager in the final.

"It's been an incredible couple of weeks, that's for sure. I think any time I can play my brand of tennis, I know that I can match it against the best in the world. For the last fortnight, the stars have aligned for me. I have been able to play really good tennis when I've needed it.

"This is just incredible. I never dreamt that I'd be sitting here with this trophy here at the French Open. I mean, obviously we have dreams and goals as children, but this is incredible."

Aged 19, Vondrousova had yet to drop a set coming into the biggest match of her young career, avenging two clay court swing losses to Petra Martic and Johanna Konta en route to Saturday's clash. 

Barty ended 2018 with a first Grand Slam doubles title at the US Open alongside CoCo Vandeweghe, and had reached four other major doubles finals alongside countrywoman Casey Dellacqua, and it was perhaps that experience that afforded her the quicker start, racing ahead 4-0 - similarly to how she did against Anisimova.


Vondrousova soon got on the board but Barty remained in front, breaking serve for a third time and holding comfortably to take the opening set, striking 13 winners to just two from the teenager.

"I think I have always enjoyed playing on clay. I just never get to play much on it, and I think certainly these last two weeks, last fortnight has been incredible.

"I said to my team at the start of the year I was just worried about falling over, and I can successfully say that we got to the end of the clay court season and I did not fall over once. So I'm pretty pumped with that."

The last two Roland Garros champions (Simona Halep and Jelena Ostapenko) recovered from a set and a break down to win their final, and Vondrousova found herself in much the same situation as she quickly fell behind 2-0 in the second set. The Czech youngster settled into her serve games, but it was Barty who was first to championship point at 5-3, reversing a 40-15 deficit to capture the title off a triumphant overhead putaway.

In all, Barty played what was, in her own words during the post-match interview, "the perfect match," striking a total 27 winners to 26 unforced errors, came to net 20 times - winning 15 of those points - and dropped just four points behind her second serve, getting broken just once in the match.

"Evonne [Goolagong] sent me a text a couple days ago and said this was her first Grand Slam. I spotted her name on the trophy. I'll give her a call a little bit later on.

"There were players that were dominant and that I looked up to. I think in particular that was Evonne. When I got a little bit older, I began to realize what she achieved and just how remarkable that was.

"But there are so many players, so many amazing players, gracious players, that come on and have this style and this flair that I always tried to emulate a little bit when I was a kid. My coach always used to bring me back and say, 'We're creating our style.' I think that's probably one of the most magical things that's happened to me."