Number 1 in the world, Ash Barty from Australia, was there to support the introduction of the new roof structure at the Cairns International Tennis Center. She said this will help raise the profile of the sport in the region.
Ash Barty on the new roof at the Cairns International Tennis Center
Barty, who has decided to skip the upcoming US Open in New York due to concerns about the current health crisis, was there with John Millman, Lizette Cabrera and John-Patrick Smith at the start.
According to Tennis Australia, the new roof is an incredible addition to the future of sport in the region, according to Barty. “It’s amazing. I’ve never been here to play at this tennis center so it was nice to come up and see the roof.
It’s going to do massive things – not just for professional tennis, but grassroots tennis as well, and I think that is the ultimate goal and the investment has been to help tennis of all ages and levels.
When you have a roof it brings a whole different dynamic to professional tournaments. Obviously it gives you the cover when the weather is a bit fickle, it gives you some kind of confidence in this tournament, knowing that you will be able to get through.
It’s also about sun protection for kids when you’re younger. To have the roof here is incredible, to have the investment to bring the infrastructure together with the government and the Cairns Council is incredible. “
Millman, who ranks 43rd in the world, was also very impressed with the facilities in Cairns. “I think it’s great and I was so impressed throughout my stay here in Cairns. And I think it culminated perfectly with the opening of the new roof here in the tennis center.
It’s really important, especially here in bad weather. I’ve heard it gets pretty hot up here in Cairns … so it’s always nice to have some shade too. “Ash Barty is the current world number.
1 in singles and has won eight singles and ten doubles titles on the WTA Tour, including the 2019 French Open singles and the 2018 US Open with partner CoCo Vandeweghe. She is also the reigning individual champion at the WTA final at the end of the season.