Ash Barty suffered a surprise defeat at the hands of American Shelby Rogers, losing 6-2, 1-6, 7-6(5) in the U.S. Open third round Saturday night in New York.
Rogers, ranked 43rd in the world, started the match in fine form with an early break en route to wrapping up the first set. Australia’s world No. 1 battled back strongly in the second to push the match into a deciding set.
Barty started the third with a break but was broken herself twice as she looked to serve out the match.
Rogers refused to roll over and forced the match to a tie-break where she held her nerve to claim a tight win.
An 18-year-old sensation in the form of Emma Raducanu now awaits Rogers in a fourth-round clash early next week, with the qualifier looking to continue her own impressive U.S. Open run.
Barty has never won a U.S. Open title in singles. Her best performance at the competition has been the fourth round in 2018 and 2019.
The 25-year-old has, however, earned doubles success in the tournament. She won the title with CoCo Vandeweghe in 2018.
Barty claimed her first Wimbledon title in July this year and also picked up a bronze medal in mixed doubles at the recent Tokyo Olympics.
The Australian revealed in July that her Wimbledon success was all the more special considering the odds of her being fit in time for the tournament. She was forced to withdraw from the French Open in May because of a hip injury.
“They kept a lot of cards close to their chest and didn’t tell me a lot of the odds, didn’t tell me a lot of the information that they’d got from other specialists,” Barty said. “I think them not telling me that just proved how much we were up against the odds. There weren’t too many radiologists in Australia who had seen my injury. In a sense, it was a two-month injury.
“Being able to play here at Wimbledon was nothing short of a miracle.
“I think now to be playing pain-free through this event was incredible. Certainly now chatting to them it looked a lot less likely than I felt statistically. I think it’s been an incredible month.”