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In March, Ash Barty shocked the sporting world when, at the age of 25, she announced her retirement from the sport of tennis. The news was not just a shock because of her age, but the fact she was also the World No.1 at the time. However, following the announcement, she has already gone on to claim a title, this time in golf.
Featuring at the tournament, which was held at Brookwater Golf and Country Club in Brisbane, Barty secured the ladies competition with a round of 34 points. However, Brookwater member, Jordan Hampson, said 'I don't think she'd be too happy with her score' after shooting two over her handicap of four.
It's not the first time that Barty has had success around Brookwater. In 2020, the 25-year-old secured the women's club championship with an easy win in the match play final. This led the men's winner, and two-time Queensland amateur champion, Louis Dobbelaar, to say she has "all the tools" to make it on the professional tour.
Along with Dobbelaar, seven-time Major winner, Karrie Webb, stated: “I wouldn’t put it past her to be Australian amateur champion one day. (opens in new tab) I can see her working on her game and being good enough to be one of the best players in Australia.”
If that wasn't high enough praise, 15-time Major winner, Tiger Woods (opens in new tab), also said: "She's got a great swing, are you kidding me?" when Barty hit a wedge shot in front of him at an exhibition event along Melbourne's Yarra River in 2020.
Despite the praise from a number of high-level golfers, Barty has refused to say what her plans are following her retirement from tennis in March, stating only that the world would have to "wait and see" what she does next.
Perhaps golf may be in Barty's future plans. Along with her victory in Brisbane, the 25-year-old and her fiancé, Garry Kissick, are currently building a home right next to the Brookwater course.
Although golf could be a possibility, another option could be cricket, with Barty actually playing for Brisbane Heat in 2015-16 whilst taking a sabbatical from tennis. Heat coach, Andy Richards, said: "Her skill from the first time she picked up a bat was outstanding, she never missed a ball in her first session."
In one particular match against the Melbourne Stars in the Women's Big Bash League, Barty produced 39 runs from 27 balls. The performance did reportedly produce interest from other clubs, but the Aussie returned to tennis.
Matt studied Sports Journalism at Southampton Solent University, graduating in 2019. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly and the PGA, he covers all aspects of the game, from Tour news to equipment testing and buyers’ guides. Taking up the game at the age of six, Matt currently holds a handicap of 3 and despite not having a hole in one…yet, he has had two albatrosses. His favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.
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