It took Ash Barty all of two minutes to realise she had to bring her A-game to compete with former Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber.
But such is her form that, down 15-40 in the opening game of her semi-final clash with the German, the Aussie starlet saved two break points, broke Kerber on her first service game and then streaked to a 3-0 lead that would eventually become a – first-set win.
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It was classic tennis from a woman who has found the form of her life, equal parts skill and aggression on the grass.
Kerber burnt a challenge on a pinpoint Barty serve in just the fifth game.
Kerber did find success, winning eight-straight points on her own serve, while Barty held to love and served for the set at 5-3.
She had to stave off a break point, but was good enough to work Kerber all over the court and seize the opportunity at the net. She bashed an ace to claim the set.
She is now one set away from the Wimbledon final.
Originally published asStart the Barty Party? Aussie Ash smashes through first set
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