Tennis greats applaud Barty's rise to No. 1

Aussie women Barty Fitzgibbons and Green rise to the top in magical 24 hours of sport

Aussie women Barty Fitzgibbons and Green rise to the top in magical 24 hours of sport

New world No.1 Ashleigh Barty has withdrawn from this week's Eastbourne International due to an arm injury, just one week before Wimbledon begins. Seven-times grand slam champion Goolagong Cawley reached No 1 for a fortnight in 1976.

Tennis Australia chief Craig Tiley commended a "remarkable historical accomplishment".

"It's hard to put into words what we have been able to achieve over the last few years and to be where we are is just incredible". This year we were aiming for top 10 and now to be where we are is really a testament to all the people around me.

"Oh it's just been the most fantastic journey for myself and my team and we've got to this point by doing all the small things right and I think we will continue to try and do that", Barty said.

Tyzzer said Barty's strong work ethic and constant push to be the best continually challenged him and her strength and conditioning coach, Englishman Mark Taylor.

Now she will head to London trying to join an elite list of greats - Margaret Court, Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf and Serena Williams - to win the French Open and Wimbledon titles back-to-back.

"It's been a whirlwind year for me but to follow in the footsteps of Evonne, even to be mentioned in the same sentence as her is incredible", Barty said.

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Her ability to play tennis was never an issue; she was a junior champion at Wimbledon in 2011.

A "humble" and "quiet" achiever, she represents all the best we can hope for from our Australian sporting greats - determination, persistence and a sense of humility in her exemplary skill on the court. "Long may she reign". After 14 months away, Barty returned to the women's tour in 2016, with a ranking of No. 623.

Barty said it was an achievement in "another realm" to become only the second Australian woman to top the world rankings.

"With incredible versatility, perseverance, and focus, Ash Barty is an inspiration to the next generation of young players in Australia. Well done!" she tweeted.

"Ash is a very worthy number one and winning at the French will have given her even more confidence", Goolagong Cawley said in a statement on Monday. "We've got a big couple of weeks coming up; make sure we're ready to go, but we'll certainly be having a beer or two".

Tennis Queensland chief Mark Bloomfield said children "have a role model now". It's an injury I've had since I was 16 years old and at certain times of year I need to be more careful with it.

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