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Ashleigh Barty secures her place in fourth round of Australian Open 2021

Barty rallied from 4-2 down in the second set and broke Alexandrova’s serve to make it 4-all on her sixth break point.

AP AP
Melbourne Published on: February 13, 2021 15:48 IST
Australia's Ash Barty hits a forehand return to Russia's
Image Source : AP

Australia's Ash Barty hits a forehand return to Russia's Ekaterina Alexandrova during their third round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 13

Ash Barty has taken another step toward winning her home major. The top-seeded Australian beat Ekaterina Alexandrova of Russia 6-2, 6-4 to reach the fourth round of the Australian Open for the third straight year.

Barty rallied from 4-2 down in the second set and broke Alexandrova’s serve to make it 4-all on her sixth break point. She then won 10 of the last 15 points to close out the match.

The 29th-seeded Alexandrova had beaten former Wimbledon champion Simona Halep and reigning French Open champion Iga Swiatek in a warm-up tournament last week.

Barty said she'd never played at tour-level without a crowd before Saturday’s match in Margaret Court Arena. She said in her on-court interview she liked the sound of striking the ball in the empty stadium. She added, “It feels a little bit like practice, so we’re pretty used to it.”

Barty next faces American Shelby Rogers for a chance to reach the quarterfinals.

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