Barty targets Olympic gold after Wimbledon triumph

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FILE PHOTO: Tennis – Wimbledon – London, Britain – July 11, 2021 Australia’s Ashleigh Barty poses with the women’s singles trophy on the balcony of the Park Plaza after winning the final Pool via REUTERS/Ben Queenborough

Newly-crowned Wimbledon champion Ash Barty has set her sights on Olympic glory after the Australian claimed her second Grand Slam title at the All England Club over the weekend.

The world number one defeated Karolina Pliskova 6-3 6-7(4) 6-3 in Saturday’s final to emulate her idol and Australian great Evonne Goolagong, who triumphed at the grasscourt major in 1971.

Barty, 25, heads into the July 23-Aug. 8 Tokyo Games aiming to join Steffi Graf (1988) and Venus (2000) and Serena (2012) Williams as the only women in the Open era to win Wimbledon and Olympic singles gold in the same year.

“Being able to represent Australia at the Olympics is going to be an awesome experience and it’s important over this next period to celebrate the fact we’ve achieved something really special at Wimbledon,” Barty told Australian media.

“I have a lot of other goals, dreams that are in my mind and within my team and we’ll certainly reset in the next couple of days … enjoy some time together and then we go again. But really looking forward to the Olympics.”

The 2019 French Open champion had said it was miracle she even had the chance to play at Wimbledon after a hip injury forced her to retire in the Roland Garros second round.

“In the last six weeks I’ve cried a lot. A lot of it was through heartbreak at the French and now, through a sense of joy and happiness and how much everything has changed,” Barty said.

“We said from the French there will be a silver lining and we’ve found it.”

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