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Ash Barty makes her comeback as she returns to the tennis court

Her secret doubles comeback!
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Looking match fit and beaming from ear to ear, it seems tennis legend and new mum Ash Barty, who turned 27 in April, may well be “keeping mum” when it comes to what’s next for her, both on and off the court!

Spotted recently with Aussie surfing sensation Steph Gilmore at a tennis and surfing clinic for school children in Northern NSW, it seems the two former world No. 1 superstars were a real hit with the kids and Ash talked passionately about her love of the game.

‘Ash has made sure she’s keeping her foot in the tennis world.’

(Credit: Getty)

And as mounting speculation around a possible comeback continues to bubble away, a well-placed source reveals there are plenty of reasons to think that the three-time grand slam champ is not quite done yet!

“It’s been very telling over the past few months, especially after she and husband Garry [Kissick] welcomed little Hayden in early July, that Ash has made sure she’s keeping her foot in the tennis world,” a source tells Woman’s Day.

“From being front and centre when they announced her hometown event the Brisbane International would be returning at the end of this year, and her ongoing support of the Australian Open, along with these regular tennis clinics she’s involved with at the grassroots level – by the looks of it, there’s a very real chance she could go around one more time!”

Renowned on the tennis circuit as someone who plays her cards close, she’s been more of an open book of late as, during one of the tennis clinic’s Q&A sessions, she explained to the kids how she uses five key words – calm, clear, present, sharp and fun – to reset herself when she feels under pressure during matches.

Ash admitted that thinking about these words could ease her mind, especially if she was feeling “cornered” in a tough game, later telling the group, “It’s nice to be out with kids and you sometimes forget how much fun that group environment is.”

“I loved hitting the slice,” Ash told kids in Pottsville.

(Credit: Supplied)

Ash ruled out any suggestion she would play full-time again when she addressed the media at the Brisbane International event launch in September, saying, “I don’t have the time – I don’t have the time to train, I don’t have the time to prepare.” She added.

“I’m certainly not coming out of retirement,” which begs the question, could she instead be considering a comeback in the doubles?

“Ash is great mates with Caroline Wozniacki, also a new mum, so that would be a doubles match made in heaven!” says the source, adding that no one would be surprised if she teamed up with close friend Casey Dellacqua either – they played doubles together when Ash was just starting out at age 15.

“Casey has retired too, so to see them both come back would cause such a stir!” the source spills.

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“A sensational pairing would see Ash in the mixed doubles with one of the Aussie Special Ks – Thanasi Kokkinakis or Nick Kyrgios.

“There’s a real chance that Thanasi could convince Ash to play again – they go way back to 2018 when they teamed up in the mixed doubles at Wimbledon. That will surely get the fans excited – but I’m not sure Nick would be happy with that!”

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