Ash Barty cut his way into the fourth round of the Australian Open on Saturday night and diced social media

One day after compatriot Nick Kyrgios’ exciting defeat against Dominic Thiem in five sets in front of a loud audience in the John Cain Arena, Barty’s match against Ekaterina Alexandrova could not have been any different

Barty played in front of an empty Margaret Court arena following Victoria’s five-day COVID-19 lockdown that banned fans from attending and made it through to round four thanks to a routine 6-26-4 win
The 25-year-old feeds on the legion of passionate and vocal fans who cheer her on with every shot at the Australian Open, but going onto the pitch on Saturday night was an eerie sensation for the Australian star

The roar of the crowd filling the stadium as Barty walks into the square has been replaced by an eerie, almost deafening silence

Barty went into the third round under a certain cloud of injuries, with her heavily buckled left leg causing concern for the fans

The 25-year-old pulled out of her scheduled doubles on Saturday, which further fueled the notion that her left thigh problem was worse than she allowed it to be

Die Welt NrI insisted after her second round victory that she was “fit as a violin” and that strapping was just a precaution that looked more serious than the problem

Barty was slow to get out of the blocks against Alexandrova and the Russian took advantage of an easy opening game from the Aussie to take an early break

The home favorite lost 2-0 after Alexandrova came in 29th Seed had held her own serve before Barty turned the first sentence upside down

The World No.I stabilized things on their own racket to play their first game of the game before a jaw-dropping revival that included three pauses of Alexandrova serve

From 0-2 down, the Aussie rattled off six games in a row to win the opening in style

Again and again the Australian hit her Russian opponent with a ruthless backhandpiece to which Alexandrova simply had no answer

The World No.I even managed to meet a rare backhand slice winner who snuck deep across the net and bounced deep into Alexandrova’s backyard

In the end it was a relatively comfortable win for Barty, who won 6-4 in the second set on March 29 Seed passed by and amazed the audience at her mastery of the backhand disc

Barty’s backhand disc has a real leg spin #AusOpen

in a dustbowl turn on day five

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