Ash Barty has won the Newcombe Medal for the third consecutive year, capping off a brilliant year of tennis for the World No. 1.
The 23-year-old was presented with the game’s highest individual honour by tennis legend John Newcombe at Crown Palladium in Melbourne on Monday night. The accolade marks Barty’s place as Australia’s most outstanding tennis player in 2019.
After Sam Stosur, Barty is the only other player to take out the Newcombe Medal three times.
Receiving the medal is a fitting end to what has been an exceptional year for Barty, who is the first Australian woman to finish as a year-end World No. 1. This year, Barty has won titles in Miami and Birmingham, the WTA finals and achieved her maiden Grand Slam title at the French Open.
— TennisAustralia (@TennisAustralia) December 2, 2019
In accepting the award, Barty chose to thank her parents and coaches, acknowledging their support in what makes her success on the court possible.
“It takes a village. We’re a tennis family and I’m very humbled to be here tonight again,” she said while accepting the award.
“I’m extremely fortunate to have such an amazing network around me. It’s very special to have mum, dad and my very first coach – Jim – here.
“They gave me the unconditional love and support time and time again in all the bad times. In good times, they’re always there and there a few words they said to me: ‘I love to watch you play’.
“When your mum and dad says that to you, when your coach says that to you, that makes the heart race a little bit – like it’s racing right now.
“Honestly, it’s been incredible and I’m very grateful they’re here tonight to share it with me as well.”
Last month, Barty pocketed the biggest winner’s cheque in tennis history, $6.4 million, after winning the prestigious WTA Finals in China.
Off the court, Barty’s humble attitude has skyrocketed her to role model status. She is the Indigenous Tennis Ambassador, has partnered with the RSPCA and is the face of a campaign to encourage women and girls to stay in sport.
‘I’m extremely fortunate to have such an amazing support network around me.’@ashbarty wins prestigious Newcombe Medal for a third year straight –> https://t.co/y7ZyBiaGnN
— WTA (@WTA) December 2, 2019