Ash Barty‘s next career move has been revealed, with the recently retired tennis star confirming she will take part in a global golf tournament.
Barty, a three-time grand slam champion, shocked fans last month when she announced her retirement from tennis at the age of 25.
Barty in June will headline an exhibition event alongside fellow sporting icons including champion boxer Canelo Alvarez, Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola and Tottenham striker Harry Kane, in what will be known as the Icons Series event.
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The event will be a nine-hole team matchplay format at Liberty National in New Jersey.
Barty’s ‘Team World’, which will be captained by Ernie Els, will go against Team USA which will include swimming GOAT Michael Phelps, NFL legend Ben Roethlisberger and former boxer Oscar De La Hoya.
“I’m excited to be part of the Icons Series and I hope through my participation in the series that we can encourage more women and girls to participate in golf around the world,” she said.
“The series is also a great opportunity for athletes to have an impact on local community and charity projects in each of the host destinations.
“It’s such a unique opportunity to have fun, test yourself and compete against the world’s greatest athletes in a sport that we are all so passionate about. I can’t wait to experience Liberty National and learn from our iconic captain Ernie Els. I hope all the Aussie fans in New York and New Jersey come out to cheer us on.”
The event will be broadcast on NBC in America, and it’s expected the tournament will also be televised live in Australia.
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According to The Sydney Morning Herald, Barty has taken out a stake in the Icons Series, with hopes to one day bring the tournament to Australia.
Icons Series chief executive Thomas Brookes also made it known that fans can expect Barty to be one of the event’s top performers after recently impressing English golfer Ian Poulter.
“She’s absolutely terrific,” Brookes told The Sydney Morning Herald.
“She did a range session with Ian Poulter, who is one of our future captains in September when she was at the US Open, and she had not hit a golf ball for a while. Ian said, ‘just hit a few balls and we’ll see how you go’.
“She hit this ball, I don’t know how far. And he turned around and said, ‘you’re having me on. Let’s just take it a bit deeper. Can you do me a high fade?’ And she did a high fade. Then he said, ‘can you do me a low draw?’ And she did a low draw.
“He said, ‘oh my goodness, you are something else’. She’s got those skill sets within her locker. With a bit of practice, she can get lower than a three or four handicap. I know she’s really, really excited to be playing in New York and she’s also really keen to bring the concept to Australia.”
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