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January 18, 2018

Ashleigh Barty

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

A. BARTY/C. Giorgi

5-7, 6-4, 6-1

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What did you think of that?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Well, pretty happy with it. In the end to come away and sort of run away with that third set was really nice.

No, knew it was going to be a tough match from the get-go. So definitely happy to get through.

Q. Did the heat have any factor in it?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, there was still plenty of heat in the court, which is sort of the way I like it. It made it a little bit more lively than other times when you play at night. No, it was sort of nice to still have a bit of heat in the day, even playing so late.

Q. Do you back yourself in those conditions, given Queenslander...
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Absolutely. I think you have to. There's no other way to approach it. It's tough. It's tough for everyone. Tough for Aussies. I probably spent a little bit more time in it than most others. But for me it wasn't sort of an issue today. I knew it was scheduled at night. Sort of fortunate not to get sort of in the middle of the day.

Q. Second match in a row you've had to come from a set down. Are you concerned you're starting slow? Are you putting that to your opponent's good play?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: I wouldn't think a 6-7 and a 5-7 is starting slow necessarily. I'm in both sets. I was up and had chances, just wasn't quite able to close it.

No, I mean, not concerned at all. Still coming off with a win, which is the most important thing.

Q. Must be really pleased with your resilience to come back from both those games.
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Absolutely, yeah. It's nice coming back from a set down. You never like being a set down to begin with. Certainly gives you some nice satisfaction when you're able to come back, really stick it out, sort of hang around for the match.

Q. Compared to when you won junior Wimbledon, a little unsure about everything, you stepped away. It's well-documented. Compared to now, are you at complete ease, comfort of being on that court in front of all those people doing what you're doing for a living?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yes. I think that's simple. For me, I feel like a completely different person than what I was before I stopped playing. I feel comfortable on and off the court, happy in my own skin, just really comfortable with the way I'm playing my tennis.

Q. Is it as much feeling comfortable off the court as it is on? Travel, being away from home, that's as much a part of it as trying to concentrate in front of 15,000 people?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: They definitely coincide. At the end of the day, we're very lucky to play tennis as a profession, to have it as my career. Off the court with my family, sort of my loved ones, sort of having that normal life is most important to me.

Q. It's always one match at a time. Have you had the luxury of looking forward and seeing only six of the top 16 are left in the women's, where you fit into that jigsaw?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: No, I hadn't. I actually hadn't even known who was my next opponent. Found that out on court.

No, I actually don't look at the draw as much. You'll find out through social media, you can't avoid it, who you're playing.

No, I'm not one to look at the draws at all.

Q. Your next match, what do you think with Osaka?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Very similar. Another big hitter. Naomi is a great chick and can certainly give the ball a rip when she's got time. I think for me it's sort of not overly usual to have three matches very similar.

But, no, I mean, very excited to be in the third round again, put myself in a position where I can go deeper in the tournament.

Q. What would it mean to go at least one step further?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: It would be amazing. It really would. It would be sort of a first time for me.

Like I said, I've been able to hang around long enough in these matches to put myself in a position where you can go out there on Saturday, have a red hot crack and try to make my first fourth round.

Q. Is the feeling different compared to 12 months ago? Was last year sort of riding a wave, weren't expecting much of yourself? This time do you expect more of yourself?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, I think last year was just everything was unexpected. It was sort of new ground for me. Everything was brand-new. Even though this situation is also brand-new, I feel like I put pressure on myself to perform well and to play well and to do well. That's what I expect of myself. It's not always going to happen, but I can certainly sort of put myself in the position where I can get the best out of myself.

Q. The WTA Finals are moving to Shenzhen, double the prize money. Are you excited about that?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, I saw that earlier today. It's amazing. Amazing for women's tennis. Amazing for tennis in China and the WTA. I saw it on Twitter, I think. Amazing that we're getting the support for women's tennis, the prize money has gone through the roof, which is unreal, too.

Q. Playing in the doubles with Casey tomorrow. Must be looking forward to that. Out in the heat again.
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, it will be good. I don't have to get on a practice court, I can go and play a doubles match.

Got a text from Case stating we had a practice court booked, saying, Make sure you're there. It's all good. I'm excited to play doubles again. Feels like a long time since we played.

No, excited to get out there for a first round. A very tough match for us. Hopefully we can go there and play well.

Q. Most likely prime time Sunday night on the calendar. It will be a packed house here. A massive television audience. How much does that excite you?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, we'll see what the schedule brings. I'm happy to play anywhere at any time. But I've been very lucky to play on Rod Laver the last two matches. It's an amazing court. I think probably the best court in Australia to play in. It's been unreal.

If I get another opportunity, it would be awesome. But, yeah, as I said, I'll play anywhere, any time, no worries.

Q. The atmosphere, talk about the surface of Rod Laver Arena, slow? What kind of surface is it?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Well, I mean, to be honest, I haven't played on any other courts to compare it for speed or anything wise. Compared to the practice courts, it's a little bit different, as expected. In a stadium, the conditions change a bit.

Yeah, it's not overly quick nor overly slow. I like the pace of it. Obviously it's very nice playing at night. I mean a lovely court to play on.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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