Ipswich tennis star Ashleigh Barty warms up at Leichhardt yesterday in readiness for her first match today.
Ipswich tennis star Ashleigh Barty warms up at Leichhardt yesterday in readiness for her first match today. Sarah Harvey

Barty happy to be home

THERE'S no place like home, especially when you're a Wimbledon junior champion.

That's the case for Springfield-based tennis ace Ashleigh Barty, who was back on familiar Ipswich courts yesterday.

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After her Wimbledon success last year, Barty has been on a rollercoaster ride, playing in her first Australian Open and winning recent Pro tournaments in Sydney and Mildura.

But she returned home last Friday night keen to contest the City of Ipswich Tennis International she has supported in recent years.

Yesterday, the Ipswich talent practised on the clay courts at Leichhardt in readiness for her first doubles match at 1pm today.

Barty opens her singles campaign at the Australian Pro Tour event tomorrow.

A busy Barty had a short session at the George Alder Tennis Centre yesterday.

However, her father Robert said she was in fine spirits, after enjoying a few rare days off.

"It's just good to have her home. We don't see her very often at all now," Robert said.

"She's pretty good. It's been a long couple of months for her but she's going well. She likes to get home wherever she can."

With qualifying for the City of Ipswich International completed yesterday, the excitement builds from 10am today.

Main draw singles matches today include former junior Wimbledon semi-finalist and 2010 Ipswich International runner-up Jason Kubler.

Men's top seed Michael Look is another Queenslander to watch.

The leading players lining up today in women's singles are Arina Rodionova of Russia, and Aussie duo Jess Moore and Sasha Jones.

Entry to Ipswich's premier tennis centre is free.



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