After a COVID-19-induced hiatus last year, Wimbledon has a women’s champion. World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty won the title, beating Karolina Pliskova 6-3, 6-7 (4), 6-3 on Saturday.
“It took me a long time to verbalize the fact that I wanted to dare to dream it and say I wanted to win this incredible tournament. … I didn’t sleep a lot last night. I was thinking of all the ‘What-ifs,’” the No. 1-ranked Barty said. “But I think when I was coming out on this court, I felt at home, in a way.”
This is the Australian’s first Wimbledon title, having won the 2019 French Open. She was the first Australian woman to reach a Wimbledon final since Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1980.
“I hope I made Evonne proud,” said Barty, who wore an outfit that was a tribute to the dress Goolagong played in when she won the tournament for the first time, 50 years ago.
Barty controlled the match until the second set where Pliskova broke the tie running down a Barty shot that flicked the net lobbed in the air and was subsequently smashed back to the court.
Then, in the final set, Barty hit her seventh ace of the match, for championship point, Pliskova netted it over and it was over.
“I was really proud of myself,” said Barty, who climbed her way up the stands to hug her coach, Craig Tyzzer, and others, “the way I was able to reset and just keep going, just keep chipping away, at the start of that third set and hold my nerve there in the end.”
Barty’s win pushed her advantage over Pliskova in their head-to-heads to 6-2. Pliskova, the tournament’s No. 8 seed, has never won a major title.
Follow Christian Ortega on Twitter @unofficialchris.
Contributing: Associated Press