Ash Barty has emulated Australian tennis icon Pat Cash after her Wimbledon win by clambering up the grand stand to kiss her boyfriend – before admitting to Prince William and Kate how nervous she was throughout the match.
The Australian tennis ace is the new champion after beating world 13 Karolina Pliskova in an epic three-set final at the All England Club.
The victory made the 25-year-old the third Australian woman to win the grand slam, and the first to do so in 41 years after her idol Evonne Goolagong last secured the title in 1980.
However, Goolagong was not the only Australian tennis icon Barty paid homage to after taking out the trophy.
Impersonating Cash’s climb into the player’s box after his 1987 win, Barty raced into the grandstand and jumped onto a railing in a bid to reach her supporters – before realising an easy-access gate had been put in place to stop a similar stunt.
Ash Barty has emulated Australian tennis icon Pat Cash’s grand stand climb (pictured) in a bid to reach her players’ box after taking out the Wimbledon trophy
The world No. 1 mounted a railing in a bid to reach her boyfriend Gary Kissick and other supporters
Barty came close to reaching Kissick (pictured) but was forced to jump back down after running out of places to step
The Queenslander was forced to abandon her plan after reaching a dead end, with spectators quickly redirecting her to a nearby staircase.
‘I was very worried for you when you started to do your Pat Cash impersonation,’ on-court interviewer Sue Barker joked.
‘I wanted to shout “there is a gate there!” but you eventually found it.’
Barty admitted she hadn’t thought the shortcut through.
‘It was a little bit of a wobbly step there, I probably should’ve taken the elegant road but that’s ok,’ she laughed.
After reaching her team, Barty first hugged her physio Mel Omizzolo before walking over to her partner Gary Kissick for an emotional embrace.
Next, she reached her coach Craig Tyzzer then close friend Storm Sanders.
The world No 1 one later met with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in the Wimbledon Clubhouse, where the royals congratulated her on her achievement.
Pat cash climbed into the tennis box (pictured) after he won the 1987 men’s single title at the English grand slam
Prince William told her she ‘didn’t look like she had any nerves today at all’ – but Barty admitted that was far from the truth.
‘Oh no, I did (have nerves),’ she said chuckling.
‘I tried to just hit it out.’
Barty hailed her Wimbledon triumph as ‘nothing short of a miracle’ after overcoming serious injury to complete her dream of lifting the biggest title in tennis.
After her triumph on Saturday, she revealed the full extent of the hip injury that she feared would derail her Wimbledon hopes, just as they’d ruined her chances of regaining the French Open title.
The injury was so bad that her close team, headed by Tyzzer, kept the gloomy news from her a month before Wimbledon that she was suffering from an injury which could keep her out until August.
Barty hugs her partner Gary Kissick after becoming the first Australian woman to win Wimbledon in 41 years
Barty celebrates with her coach Craig Tyzzer after winning her Ladies’ Singles Final match against Karolina Pliskova
‘They kept a lot of cards close to their chest and didn’t tell me a lot of the odds, didn’t tell me a lot of the information that they’d got from other specialists,’ revealed Barty after her 6-3 6-7 (4-7) 6-3 win over Pliskova.
‘I think them not telling me that just proved how much we were up against the odds.
‘There weren’t too many radiologists in Australia who had seen my injury. In a sense, it was a two-month injury.
‘Being able to play here at Wimbledon was nothing short of a miracle.
‘I think now to be playing pain-free through this event was incredible.
‘It’s funny, sometimes the stars align – you can think positively, you can plan, and sometimes the stars do align, you can chase after your dreams.
‘Certainly now chatting to them it looked a lot less likely than I felt statistically. I think it’s been an incredible month.’
Yet Barty never stopped believing in herself and she always had the feeling that there would be a ‘silver lining’ after the trying month where even she recognised that making the first round of Wimbledon would be ‘touch and go’.
‘I’m a firm believer in everything happens for a reason, the good moments and the tough moments,’ she said.
Barty later joined the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in the Wimbledon clubhouse, where she admitted she was nervous throughout the match
‘I felt like I was able to get better and better with each match and trust myself more and more each and every time I stood out on the court.
‘Some of my toughest moments have come at Wimbledon. Now some of my most incredible moments have come here as well.
‘I think it’s just an iconic venue. It’s an amazing club. To be able to learn so much from this place, I think I’m a very lucky girl.’
After having to be so careful with the injury during Wimbledon, Barty will now go on to Tokyo for the Olympics before flying to New York, attempting to add a gold medal and the US Open title to the Venus Rosewater Dish.
Asked if her body would hold up to the upcoming challenges, Barty said: ‘I certainly have no fears about my fitness. Of course, some things will happen, that’s the life of being an athlete.
‘But I know that I’ve got the very best team around me to prepare me in a way as best as we can.’
Barty poses with the trophy during the awarding ceremony for the women’s singles final