Polish tennis star poised to be No. 1 after Barty retirement

Ashleigh Barty said on Thursday that she will remove herself from the WTA rankings after announcing her retirement, opening the door for Poland’s Iga Swiatek to become world No 1.

The three-time Grand Slam-winning Australian has held the top spot for more than two years but stunned the sports world on Wednesday by quitting at just 25.

The 20-year-old Swiatek is a massive 2,204 ranking points behind Barty, but could be elevated to No. 1 depending on what happens at the ongoing Miami Open.

“My name will be taken off the list in the next ranking,” Barty said at a press conference in Brisbane, the first time she has spoken publicly since her retirement announcement.

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“It’s going to be an exciting time for the WTA Tour with a new No. 1 and it’s going to be a really cool period for them now.

“But we have done everything that we needed to on our side with them. We have worked with the WTA Tour and they have made my journey so enjoyable and made it really comfortable.”

Swiatek is currently 691 points ahead of third-ranked Maria Sakkari of Greece after winning at Indian Wells last week, her second title in as many tournaments after her triumph in Doha in February. – AFP

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