Barty books final with ‘insane’ win
Ash Barty recovered from being absolutely shell-shocked to claim a spot in the French Open final after a rollercoaster win against her American opponent.
The Australian claimed a 6-7 6-3 6-3 win over teenager Amanda Anisimova in incredible scenes with momentum shifting wildly throughout the match.
Anisimova had burst onto the scene at the French Open with the 17-year-old wunderkind defeating the likes of 11th seed Aryna Sabalenka and defending champion and world No. 3 Simona Halep on her way to the semi-final.
Her giant-killing ways saw the American breeze into the semis without losing a set.
But Barty raced to a dominant lead in the first set, going up 5-0 in just 14 minutes. The 23-year-old looked in full control as she looked to book a place in her first ever Grand Slam final.
But in unbelievable scenes, 30 minutes later, her opponent claimed the first set 7-6 in a tiebreaker.
It was a stunning turnaround with Anisimova pinching the set.
She then rushed to 3-0 in the second and Barty looked cooked. But the rollercoaster match saw Barty reel off the next six games to take the second set and keep her hopes alive.
Barty won her seventh straight game in the first game of the third set, but yet another twist saw Anisimova claim a break and go up 2-1 in the decider.
Barty was the beneficiary of the next twist, winning the next five straight games. Anisimova saved three match points on serve and it looked as if there was one more twist in the game but Barty held on to clinch a spot in the final.
She will play Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova in the final after the 19-year-old ended the run of Brit Johanna Konta in straight sets.
In a good sign for the Aussie, the pair have met twice before with Barty winning both matches.
Barty was thrilled with the win, calling the match "the hardest thing I've ever had to do".
"I fought my hardest and it feels amazing," she added. "I am proud of the way I fought to win that match, the conditions were incredibly tough.
"It was cold and windy and I can't wait to enjoy it, it's been an amazing journey I have been on and I can't wait until tomorrow."
The conditions were swirling with rain around, making it challenging on the clay courts of Roland Garros.
Barty said she went the full gamut of form with some sparkling shots, but some points leaving plenty to desire.
"It was pretty brutal out there and I was proud of the way I was able to fight and scrap and find a way after I pretty much threw away that first set," she said. "At the end of the day, it's an amazing opportunity.
"I played some really good tennis, I played some pretty awful tennis. I feel like I've played some really good tennis, some consistent tennis.
"Even though that level wasn't there for the whole match today, it was there when I needed it. I'm so proud of myself the way I was able to go out there and handle it. All things considered, I was really happy with the way I responded at a set and 3-0 (down)."
Barty will now rise to at least third in the world, the highest for an Australian woman since Wendy Turnbull in 1985.
Social media exploded after the result with Barty on the verge of history. |She's the first Australian in the decider at the French Open since 2010 when Sam Stosur went down to Italy's Francesca Schiavone.
If she can win, she will be the first Australian champion at the French Open since Margaret Court in 1973.
Australia was right behind Barty on her march to history as social media went into meltdown.