Author(s): Ron Reed
For a variety of reasons, Australian sport needed an uplifting, inspirational, feel-good story in 2019. The year was only little more than half over before one had well and truly arrived - one of the best ever, in fact. Tennis star Ashleigh Barty captured the public's imagination and admiration by not only winning a major tournament for the first time, the French Open, and ascending to the world No 1 ranking, the first Australian woman to do so for 46 years, but by the humble, modest, gracious and yet iron-willed and fiercely focussed way she went about it. In all she did, she was the definition of the word classy. In short, she made Australia proud.
Among those watching intently was one of Australia's most experienced and respected sportswriters, Ron Reed, who decided that Barty's breakthrough into the very top echelons of one of the nation's favourite sports needed to be recorded in forensic detail - the wins, the quotes, the processes, the reactions of others, the team behind her, the background and the many reasons why she is such a true-blue Australian that she could never be mistaken for any other nationality. Barty: Power and Glory is the result.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR Ron Reed's 50-plus years in sports journalism include decades as a columnist and feature writer for Australia's biggest-selling daily newspaper, the Herald Sun, as well as two stints as Sports Editor of that paper's predecessor, The Herald, and one as Editor of the old Sporting Globe. His work has earned many awards and accolades, including Australian sportswriter of the year and a lifetime achievement award from Sport Australia, formerly the Australian Sports Commission. He has covered most of the world's major sports events - many of them multiple times - in more than 30 countries, and is a tennis aficionado, having been a fi xture at the Australian Open as well as many Davis Cup ties. He is the author of the only book ever written about the legendary Frank Sedgman, Game Sedge and Match.