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'Cant wait': Barty confirms big new plans

NCA NewsWire -

Australian Open champ Ash Barty has decided it's time to give back to the sport she dominated launching her own foundation declaring she wants to help "as many young Australians as possible".

Barty launched the Ash Barty Foundation at the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club, the former home of the Australian Open, two years after her epic win at Melbourne Park, her last victory before her shock retirement, aged just 25.

A three time grand slam champ and now a mum, Barty said she had been working for a long time on her charity which is aimed at taking tennis to the masses and she said there was "no ceiling" on what the foundation could potentially achieve.

"I'm so excited. I've been waiting for this day to come, to finally launch my foundation with my team," she said.

"Our purpose is to provide opportunity to young boys and girls through sport and education — two of my biggest passion pieces. Now, being able to bring it all together is really exciting.

"Our goal is to help as many young Australians as possible to make sure that the quality is there, that the money is being used in the right way," she added. "I don't want to put a goal or an expectation or a ceiling on where we go. To be honest, I'm not sure where we'll end up yet.

"It's about the journey, it's about growing and doing the best that we can. We're all very new to this — my team, my family, the team in the AB Foundation — so it's all exciting for us, it's all new. And I think we have the energy, we have the desire to do as well as we can, and that's all we can ask."

Ash Barty on Rod Laver Arena. Picture: Mark Stewart

Ash Barty on Rod Laver Arena. (Image: Mark Stewart)

Barty said work had begun in Queensland around providing tennis equipment to young people and the network would expand as far and wide as funding allows.

"So, I know it's (the money) going to be used in the most positive way in areas that are close to my heart, and communities and areas that need the opportunities to grow.

"(We want to) provide racquets and courts and upgrades to facilities.

"We've done plenty of work with the state government of Queensland as well to be able to touch on those education pieces, particularly up in north Queensland.

"So, there's plenty of opportunity for us and, to be honest, it's something that I just want to be able to spread as wide and far (as possible), and just make sure that it's used in the right way, and used to have a positive impact on as many young Aussies as we can."

Barty said the foundation would not be limited to tennis either.

"A big part of my growing and learning as an athlete was being able to be surrounded by such good people that provided me with so much opportunity," Barty said on Monday.

"I feel like now I'm excited that I get to do that; I get to commit my time in a positive way and give back to the sport that gave me so much — and extend that into education as well, and into different sports.

"It's nice now that we're finally here. It's been a lot of work, it's absolutely worth the wait, and I can't wait to kickstart."

NCA NewsWire


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