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Ashleigh Barty set for Brisbane International

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Queensland’s own world No.23 Ashleigh Barty will play the Brisbane International in 2018. The tenth edition of the Brisbane event is one of the strongest yet, with world No.21 Nick Kyrgios also set to join world No.1 Rafael Nadal (ESP), world No.3 Andy Murray (GBR) and defending champions Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) and Karolina Pliskova (CZE) in next year’s field.

“I can’t wait to play the Brisbane International, one of my favourite tournaments right here at home in Queensland,” Barty said. 

“It’s a tournament I’ve always enjoyed playing, especially in front of friends and family. When you play against the best players in the world, it helps to have the advantage of being at home and the support of the local crowd on your side.”

Barty will start the season on home soil after a breakthrough year on tour which saw her rise from 271 to just one place behind Australia’s No.1 female ranking player, world No.22 Daria Gavrilova.

“It's been an amazing season, it really has. I was very motivated and worked very hard last year to get back to where I am now.”

The 21-year-old, who trains at the Queensland Tennis Centre, made her WTA debut at the Brisbane International in 2012, and earlier this year took then world No.1 Angelique Kerber to three sets on Pat Rafter Arena during the second round of the tournament.

“I’ve had some great matches here in previous years and I’m excited to come back and do it all again in 2018,” Barty continued.

Tournament Director Geoff Quinlan says it’s exciting to have two of Australia’s best tennis players confirmed to play Brisbane.

“Ash and Nick are two of the most talented players on tour and both have a special bond with Brisbane, in particular Pat Rafter Arena,” Quinlan said.

“Ash Barty has had an incredible year on court and we are pleased she can start next year right here in front of a home crowd.”

Queensland’s Tourism and Major Events Minister Kate Jones said securing two Australian tennis players of this calibre is a great result.

“Fans will be treated to a week of world-class tennis and we are delighted to welcome Ashleigh Barty and Nick Kyrgios back to the Brisbane International,” Ms Jones said.