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Ep.205: Ash Barty lascia il tennis ma alle sue condizioni

Ash Barty speaks to the media with her coach. Source: AAP

La numero uno del tennis femminile Ash Barty ha deciso che è tempo di ritirarsi nel suo momento migliore.

SCARICA la trascrizione col testo a fronte in inglese.   

Italian

La numero uno del mondo in carica e ultima vincitrice di Wimbledon e degli Australian Open Ash Barty ha affrontato i media per spiegare la sua uscita shock dal tennis femminile.

"I just knew that for me, the time was right. I'd given absolutely everything that I could to the sport and I knew that it wouldn't be fair to my team and the people that had invested so much time and energy into my life, to not be 100 percent committed for them. So it's been a hell of a journey, I wouldn't change a thing, and I certainly have no regrets."

La domanda successiva sulla bocca di tutti per la 25enne Ngarigo è: cosa farà dopo?

Se da una parte ha dichiarato di non voler farsi tirare dentro ad una conversazione sulle sue prospettive di partecipare ad un altro sport, dall’altra ha detto che il suo contributo al tennis è lungi dall’essere terminato.

"I will forever be connected to tennis. I will never stop loving the sport. I'll never stop hitting tennis balls. I just won't be doing it selfishly for me to try and progress my career. It'll be for different reasons, and I can't wait to get out there with young girls and young boys and contribute in different ways. I'm really excited to have more time to do that. I can't wait to get out on court and teach my nieces and nephews and hope that tennis brings them the same love that it brought me."

Dopo una promettente carriera nel tennis giovanile, Barty lo lasciò temporaneamente nel 2014 per giocare a cricket nella Big Bash League femminile.

Ma nel 2017 è rientrata prepotentemente nel circuito femminile e nella classifica WTA.

Ash Barty è nata a Ipswich, ad ovest di Brisbane, e ha iniziato a giocare a tennis all’età di quattro anni.

A 25, ha ammassato un numero straordinario di successi, tra cui 15 titoli nel singolare e 12 nel doppio nel torneo WTA.

Con 119 settimane consecutive al numero uno della classifica, è la quarta striscia più lunga dopo le grandi del tennis Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova e Serena Williams.

Ma il punto di svolta è arrivato quando ha realizzato il suo unico grande sogno, vincere Wimbledon, che ha concluso con il suo momento culminante, la vittoria agli Australian Open di quest’anno.

Craig Tyzzer è stato suo allenatore dal 2016.

"Once we got to the Olympics it sort of hit home for me, that there wasn't much left in her. The motivation wasn't there, except when she played doubles with Storm and mixed with John Peers. Her singles really went by the wayside. She wasn't faster. I felt that she'd climbed where she needed to get to and it was going to be a hard slog to keep her involved. I felt that I'd seen it coming and we'd sort of discussed things."

Da tutto il mondo sono giunti calorosi omaggi.

Serena Williams ha twittato: "triste di apprendere la tua decisione, ma anche felice per il tuo nuovo capitolo nella vita”.

Petra Kvitova ha riflettuto: "sono così contenta di aver potuto condividere il campo con te”, mentre anche la sua recente rivale Madison Keys ha twittato che Barty è stata “una giocatrice di tennis incredibile ma soprattutto una delle persone migliori nel tour”.

La numero 13 al mondo Emma Raducanu ha dichiarato che Barty ha raggiunto tutto quello che voleva nello sport.

"She was a great player and she brought a lot of variety of the game and I really respected that. I took a lot inspiration from her, just how she's able to mix things up. She was always really friendly to be around in the locker room and she taught me how to kick an Aussie football too once, so that was really cool of her."

La sua mentore ed eroina personale, la leggenda del tennis australiano Evonne Goolagong Cawley, ha diffuso una dichiarazione che recita: “sono molto solidale con Ash per aver preso la decisione migliore per sé, che la rende felice. Non vedo l’ora di scoprire quale sarà il prossimo capitolo della sua vita”.

La ex Giovane Australiana dell’Anno ora sta progettando di inseguire i suoi sogni personali più vicina a casa.

"I know that my contribution with the Aboriginal and Indigenous side of our sport will only grow. I'm really excited for that. I'm really excited to have the opportunity to give Indigenous youth and Aboriginal youth around our nation more opportunity to get into the sport. That's something that we'll work on down the track, but I am more excited to spend more time in that space." 

English

Reigning world number one, defending Wimbledon and Australian Open champion Ash Barty, has faced the media to explain her shock departure from women's tennis.

"I just knew that for me, the time was right. I'd given absolutely everything that I could to the sport and I knew that it wouldn't be fair to my team and the people that had invested so much time and energy into my life, to not be 100 percent committed for them. So it's been a hell of a journey, I wouldn't change a thing, and I certainly have no regrets."

The next question on everyone's lips for the 25-year-old Ngarigo woman is what's next?

While she wouldn't be drawn on the prospect of playing another sport professionally, she did say her contributions were far from over.

"I will forever be connected to tennis. I will never stop loving the sport. I'll never stop hitting tennis balls. I just won't be doing it selfishly for me to try and progress my career. It'll be for different reasons, and I can't wait to get out there with young girls and young boys and contribute in different ways. I'm really excited to have more time to do that. I can't wait to get out on court and teach my nieces and nephews and hope that tennis brings them the same love that it brought me."

After a promising junior tennis career, she quit briefly in 2014 to play cricket in the Women's Big Bash League.

But she exploded back into the tennis circuit and the WTA rankings in 2017.

Ash Barty was born in Ipswich, west of Brisbane, and began to play tennis at the age of four.

At age 25, she's amassed an extraordinary roll-call of achievements, including 15 singles titles and 12 doubles titles on the WTA tour.

With 119 consecutive weeks holding the women's number one ranking, she's the fourth longest title holder after tennis greats Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova and Serena Williams.

But the tipping point came when she achieved her one true dream, winning Wimbledon, which was capped with her crowning moment, winning this year's Australian Open.

Craig Tyzzer has been her coach since 2016.

"Once we got to the Olympics it sort of hit home for me, that there wasn't much left in her. The motivation wasn't there, except when she played doubles with Storm and mixed with John Peers. Her singles really went by the wayside. She wasn't faster. I felt that she'd climbed where she needed to get to and it was going to be a hard slog to keep her involved. I felt that I'd seen it coming and we'd sort of discussed things."

Tributes have flowed from around the world.

Serena Williams tweeted "sad to hear your decision, but also happy for your new chapter."

Petra Kvitova reflected "I am so happy I could share the court with you", while recent opponent Madison Keys also tweeted Barty was "an incredible tennis player but more importantly one of the nicest people on tour".

World number 13 Emma Raducanu says Barty has achieved everything she wanted in the sport.

"She was a great player and she brought a lot of variety of the game and I really respected that. I took a lot inspiration from her, just how she's able to mix things up. She was always really friendly to be around in the locker room and she taught me how to kick an Aussie football too once, so that was really cool of her."

Her mentor and hero, Australian tennis legend Evonne Goolagong Cawley released a statement, saying "I'm so supportive of Ash making a decision that is best for her and makes her happy. I can't wait to see what the next chapter brings."

The former Young Australian of the Year now plans to pursue personal dreams closer to home.

"I know that my contribution with the Aboriginal and Indigenous side of our sport will only grow. I'm really excited for that. I'm really excited to have the opportunity to give Indigenous youth and Aboriginal youth around our nation more opportunity to get into the sport. That's something that we'll work on down the track, but I am more excited to spend more time in that space." 

Report by Tys Occhiuzzi 

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