'You are an angel': Ash Barty's incredible gesture for bushfire victims

Chris Young
·Sports Reporter

Ash Barty has joined the massive contingent of tennis stars to make donations to the bushfire relief effort, but the world no.1 might have trumped them all.

The reigning French Open champion has announced she will donate the entirety of her winnings at the Brisbane International next week to the Red Cross Bushfire Appeal.

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A win at the event would see Barty donate the entire $360,000 purse to the recovery fund.

Discussing the event in Brisbane on Sunday, Barty said it was crucial for everyone to chip in, acknowledging the efforts of fellow tennis stars who have pledged to pitch in as well.

“Wildlife has been lost but it has also affected lives and homes so I have been sitting down and thinking with my team and family on ways we can help,” Barty said.

Ash Barty, pictured at a press conference for the Brisbane International, will donate her winnings to bushfire relief efforts.
Ash Barty has pledged to donate her winnings from next week's Brisbane International to the Red Cross Fire Appeal. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

“There have been really great initiatives from cricketers, tennis players, golfers, soccer players all over the country trying to help out.

“We have come to the decision any of my prize money here in Brisbane will be donated to the Red Cross to go towards the families and homes affected.”

Barty’s generosity has been well documented in the past, having already donated $30,000 to the RSPCA last year to assist wildlife recovery efforts late last year.

The 23-year-old said it had been seeing the heavy smoke on her way home from the Fed Cup that prompted her to get involved.

“The first time I saw of it was flying home from the Fed Cup final from Perth back to the east coast,” Barty said.

“We could see the smoke haze and some of the fires from the plane, so that really hit home with me.”

Tennis stars hit fundraising grand slam

Nick Kyrgios called on Tennis Australia to dig deep in the nations’s time of need, as bushfires devastate livelihoods and communities around the country.

On Friday, the governing body of Australian Tennis answered the call.

Krygios' plans for a massive fundraising effort for bushfire victims has resulted in a tennis exhibition match set to feature some of the world's top players.

The 24-year-old kicked off a flood of donations to the fundraising campaign from sporting names around Australia, including American NBL star LaMelo Ball.

Kyrgios floated the idea of a charity tennis match and Tennis Australia on Friday responded by announcing a "Rally for Relief" exhibition match on Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday Jan 15.