Barty’s slip of the tongue after jaw-dropping $6.4m windfall
She's effectively won lotto six times in one week, but low-maintenance tennis superstar Ashleigh Barty only plans on splashing out on her niece and nephew following her historic payday in China.
Australian sport's new six-million-dollar girl promises fortune and fame won't change her after squirrelling away the biggest cheque in tennis history with her WTA Finals success in Shenzhen.
Barty pocketed $6.4 million for crowning her triumphant season with a 6-4 6-3 victory over defending champion Elina Svitolina on Sunday night.
No player - not even Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal or Serena Williams - has ever received such riches from a single tournament.
But Barty declared "I've got everything that I need" before revealing her plans to spoil three-year-old niece Lucy and near-two-year-old nephew Oscar.
Humble hero Ash Barty is still getting the hang of being a tennis superstar - and all the victory speeches that come with it.
After pocketing $6.4 million - the biggest cheque in tennis history - by defeating defending champion Elina Svitolina 6-4 6-3 at the WTA Finals on Sunday night, Barty addressed fans in the Chinese city of Shenzhen.
Yes, it was a mouthful that prompted a hilarious slip-of-the-tongue.
"First and foremost, thank you to the Shitty ... ah, the city of Shenzen," Barty said.
Australian sport's new six-million-dollar girl promises fortune and fame won't change her after claiming a tournament prize not even Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal or Serena Williams have matched.
Barty declared "I've got everything that I need" before revealing her plans to spoil three-year-old niece Lucy and near-two-year-old nephew Oscar.
"Thankfully they can't read but for Christmas they're getting a new swing set, which they're pretty excited about now that they've got the trampoline and swing set out the back," the humble champion told AAP in Shenzhen.
"And I know Luce and Oscar are very keen to learn how to play tennis so I think that's going to be pretty special to try and get a racquet in their hand. They already run around with a racquet, it's amazing.
"So, look, I mean the amount of zeros you have in the bank account doesn't change how I'm going to spend my off-season and spend time with my family.
"Because that's one of the biggest times that I miss throughout the year, is spending genuine time with them.
"It's great that I can buy them things that they love but I live a pretty simple life. I'm not living an extravagant life.
"I'm pretty happy in my little house at home. I've got everything that I need. I'm pretty boring. I don't really spend a lot on myself."
$16 MILLION SEASON JUST 'INCREDIBLE'
If she did, Barty could certainly shop high end.
Her unprecedented payday for a professional tennis player - man or woman - took Barty's 2019 prize money haul to $16.37 million.
That's more than men's world No.1 Novak Djokovic, who has so far amassed $16.06 million ahead of the men's season-ending showpiece in London.
"It's incredible; we're breaking records this week in particular, putting tennis on the map, putting WTA tennis on the map," Barty said. "I feel like we've earned that right to be recognised more as a global sport."
Still taking it all in, Barty says she needs time to reflect on her phenomenal year after capturing the elite season-ending championship.
"It's just been the most incredible season," Barty said after outclassing defending champion Svitolina.
"Give me a week at home with a few beers on the couch where I can kind of relive what has happened in 2019. It's just been a crazy year, it really has. It feels like it's been a year that just hasn't stopped … at times it felt like a circus going around and around. To cap it off with a very, very special night tonight in Shenzhen is really cool."
FIRST FEMALE AUSSIE YEAR-END NUMBER ONE
Barty is the first world No.1 to win the WTA Finals since Serena Williams five years ago and the first Australian since her idol Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1976.
Victory underlined a stunning season in which the 23-year-old also landed her maiden grand slam crown in Paris and became the first Australian since Lleyton Hewitt in 2002 to secure the year-end top ranking.
No other Australian woman has achieved the feat since rankings were introduced in 1975.
But she's not done yet.
Barty is bound for Perth on Monday hoping to lead Australia to a first Fed Cup title since 1974 in next weekend's final against France.
"Yeah, there's one more very important week to cap off what would be the most perfect year," Barty said.
"This Fed Cup final is something I've been looking forward to for a long time. I can't wait to get to Perth in the next couple days and then start preparing for what will be the most perfect way to end a season - playing for your country.
"For myself, to play in front of my friends and family, representing Australia, wearing the green and gold, there's absolutely nothing better."
There was certainly no one better than Barty in Shenzhen.
While most of her rivals spent the week complaining of the notoriously slow purple court, Barty went quietly about her business, dropping serve just four times in her four wins over world No.2 Karolina Pliskova, world No.6 Petra Kvitova, world No.7 Belinda Bencic and now the eighth-ranked Svitolina.
The Queenslander finished the regular seasonwith a WTA-best 12 wins over top-10 opponents as well as a tour-leading four titles from six finals, her latest success coming indoors having already picked up trophies on clay, grass and hard courts in 2019.
Throw in an equal-tour-high 56 wins from 68 matches and Barty is nothing less than a worthy year-end world No.1.
Not to mention the guaranteed top seed for the Australian Open in January after not only joining Williams and Goolagong Cawley on the season-ending championships honour roll, but also fellow all-time greats Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf, Monica Seles, Justine Henin and Martina Hingis.
"It's going to be really nice to be able to sit down, reflect and then refresh and re-gear and get ready to go for a massive 2020," Barty said. "I mean, for us Australians, we're extremely lucky to be able to start that month in Australia. It's going to be a really, really special time in my life."
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