Australia’s golden girl Ash Barty takes the first set against her opponent Shelby Rogers as she attempts to snag a place in the Australian Open quarter finals
- Australia’s Ash Barty is in action against rising American Shelby Rogers
- Barty is looking to better her semi-final finish at the Australian Open in 2020
Ash Barty looks in ominous touch early on in her fourth round match against American Shelby Rogers at the Australian Open, comfortably winning the first set 6-3.
The women’s world number one walked out to a deserted Rod Laver Arena on Monday night due to Melbourne’s five-day lockdown, but the lack of a crowd didn’t deter the home town favourite.
The Ipswich born Barty rarely looked troubled early on, as she began to move her opponent around the court with ease.
Barty, 24, was on song from the outset in the first set, comfortably breaking Rogers early to jump out to a 3-1 lead in the first set.
Australia’s Ash Barty (pictured above) hits a backhand return against Shelby Rogers
Australia’s Ash Barty hits a forehand in her fourth round match against Shelby Rogers
American Shelby Rogers (pictured above) has her work cut out against Ash Barty
She was soon in complete control, with her sublime ground strokes seeing her jump out to a 4-1 advantage against a shell-shocked Rogers.
Just as the on court Barty party was about to start, Rogers almost clawed her way back into the match.
The world number 57, from Mt Pleasant in South Carolina, had a number of break points on the Barty serve, but the-one time women’s Big Bash player with the Brisbane Heat held her nerve to bounce out to a 5-2 lead.
Barty took out the first set 6-3, with player turned commentator Casey Dellacqua in awe of her good friends ‘tennis IQ.’
‘The way she disguises her serve is a huge reason why she is so successful,’ Dellacqua said.
‘Ash is very hard to pick, and she works incredibly hard on the little things in her game which can make all the difference.’
An early break in the second set saw Barty in full control, with Rogers seemingly having no answers.
In her first three matches, Barty didn’t drop a set, blitzing Danka Kovinic 6-0, 6-0, fellow Australian Daria Gavrilova 6-1, 7-6 and Russia’s Ekaterina Alexandrova 6-2 6-4.