Barty not feeling ‘extra pressure’ going into Aus Open
Ash Barty says she feels no extra pressure going into the Australian Open after making the perfect return to the court by winning her ninth career title on Sunday.
Australia's world no.1 begins her grand slam campaign on Tuesday full of confidence after winning the Yarra Valley Classic with a 7-6 6-4 win over top Spaniard Garbine Muguruza.
"There's no extra pressure for me, that's for sure,'' Barty said.
"It's the same whether it's a Grand Slam or a first level of a tour event, any other match. I think the extra pressure and the extra chatter comes from you guys.
"That's not really my concern. It doesn't change the way that I prepare or I play.
"I think for me, regardless of what tournament it is, what match it is, what court, the routine and the preparation is all the same. That's how I know that I bring out my best stuff."
Barty is keeping things low key, promising to keep eating "my brussels sprouts".
"I've done the preparation, I've eaten my brussels sprouts, done everything to put myself in a position that I can go out there and perform at the best level I can,'' she said.
"For me, I go into this Australian Open excited, well prepared, ready to play."
Barty will take to Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday night for a first-round match against Montenegro's Danka Kovinic.
Muguruza paid tribute to Barty following their battle on Sunday, saying the Australian star "played very well".
She also thanked the Australian Open for staging the tournament, particularly with fans in the stands.
"I know it has been difficult for the city, for the country to make the Australian Open happen with everything that's been going on," she said.
"We are very grateful to have the chance to play and to have crowds. How amazing is that?
"After almost a year empty, for us, it's incredible."
Originally published as Barty not feeling 'extra pressure' going into Aus Open