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18 July 2024

Australia's ferocious Barty claims Malaysian Open title

Pic: AFP


Ashleigh Barty fired on all cylinders to clinch the WTA Malaysian Open title after she brushed aside Japan's Nao Hibino 6-3, 6-2 in 73 minutes in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday.

The Australian, who had come through the qualifiers and only dropped a set en route to the final, cut a ferocious figure from the get go with her powerful ground strokes which left Nibino reeling on most occasions.

A heavy downpour saw play suspended for almost 90 minutes with Barty leading 4-1 in the first set.

When play resumed, Barty did not let off, resuming in the same attack mode to take the first set 6-3.

The 158th-ranked player was even more dominant in the second game, working her opponents deep into the baseline with powerful forehand returns to win 6-2 and capture her first professional title.

"It's amazing to have won, it truly is. I am a bit speechless." Barty said.

"I was just happy to come out and play some good tennis today," she added.

Barty will pocket $43,000 for her maiden senior title, while Hibino will take home US$23,400.