WIMBLEDON, England—After spending nearly a year back home in Australia, Ashleigh Barty packed her bags in March and flew to Europe with the sole objective of winning more Grand Slam tournaments.
On Saturday, after four straight months on the road, the world’s No. 1 women’s tennis player picked up what she came for. With a dominant performance, Barty blew away Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic, 6-3, 6-7 (4), 6-3, to add her first Wimbledon title to the French Open she won in 2019.
Barty, 25, also became the first Wimbledon women’s singles champion from Australia since her mentor Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1980. Barty teared up on court at the mere mention of her after the match.
Pliskova, a former world No. 1 herself, found it impossible to hide her nerves as she chased a first major title. On the browning grass of Centre Court, she simply froze. Pliskova lost the first 14 points of the match and found herself down by a set in just 28 minutes. When she finally took a point, the capacity crowd in the stadium met her with a huge round of applause.
Pliskova settled into the match in the second set, dialing into the power that defines her game, full of booming serves and heavy groundstrokes. Barty, meanwhile, kept up her mixture of clean topspin and clever slices that skimmed low off the grass to force the 6-foot-1 Pliskova all over the court.