Proving that playing cricket is the ideal way to prepare for tennis, Ashley Barty has returned to the court after her 17-month venture as a cricket player for the Brisbane Heat in the Women’s Big Bash League.

Barty first came to notice as an up and coming tennis player by being the Wimbledon junior champion. She partnered with doubles specialist Jessica Moore to win the Perth Tennis International. The two had an easy time beating Sally Peers from Victoria and Barbora Stefkova of the Czech Republic 6-2 6-2,

Barty is just 19 years of age and has high-level tennis to her credit, namely three Grand Slam doubles finals. She felt that the foray into cricket was just what she needed to get away from the pressures of international tennis on the big stage.

The strength of Barty’s game is top-class serving and volleying, so she should be able to make a respectable showing when she makes her first appearance in singles at the ITF Mildura event commencing on 28 February.

Toward that end, she plans to play doubles in a tournament in Perth nest week, this time partnering Casey Dellacqua, followed by more doubles in South Australia and Victoria.

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