Madison Keys’ incredible Australian Open run came to a brutal end, as she was humbled by home favorite, Ashleigh Barty in the semifinals on Thursday. Just like her previous opponents, Ash Barty made light work of the American, dispatching her in straight sets: 6-1, 6-3. Despite her semifinal hammering, Keys can depart Australia with her head held high, and a bag full of promises and expectations.
There are not many players on the tour who can match up to a player who is such form as Ash Barty. The Australian earned praise from her quarterfinal opponent, Jessica Pegula who stated that the Australian lives in everyone’s mind. Now, Madison Keys also did not shy away from giving an honest opinion on the world number’s one current form.
Madison Keys has competed against Barty on several occasions, but their semifinal encounter at the Rod Laver Arena was the best version of the Australia, Keys had ever encountered. The American was left helpless on court, and really had no response to Barty’s onslaught.
“It’s tough. It sucks. I have played her a handful of times, and this is easily the best I think she’s ever been playing,” Keys said.
Madison Keys takes positives from encouraging summer Down Under
Madison Keys had a torrid time in 2021, where she managed to win just 11 matches throughout the season. Hence, the 2017 US Open runner-up believes that the start of the season has been very positive for her, andit gives her plenty to build upon.
“Honestly, I think the biggest thing I can take from the summer is getting a lot of matches in. It’s been really a long period of time since I have been able to start off the year on such a strong foot and have all of these matches and confidence going into the year,” Keys said.
Madison Keys truly proved to be the giantkiller at Australian Open 2022, as she knocked out three of the top 12 seeds. In the first round, she defeated Australian Open 2020 champion, Sofia Kenin in straight sets. Her next victim was Spaniard’s eighth seed, Paula Badosa in round four, before knocking out Barbora Krejcikova in the quarterfinals.