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Barty believes in his home hopes in the Australian Open

Barty believes in his home hopes in the Australian Open

MELBOURNE, January 15 (Reuters) - World number one Ash Barty will bear the brunt of her nation's hopes for a home champion at the Australian Open, promising only she will give her "best crack" at ending the 44-year drought.

Barty will be under extreme pressure to deliver at the first Grand Slam in the country in 1978.

"I can't do anything more than I can try," the 25-year-old told reporters at Melbourne Park on Saturday.

"I have to hope that everyone understands that I'm giving it my best crack. It doesn't always work out exactly how you want to."

"But you go through it the right way, you do the correct things and try and give yourself the best chance, that's all you have to do.

"That's for all the other Aussies as well, and everyone else in the draw."

Australia has been put in a frenzy by Barty if it goes deep in the tournament over the past three years, but ended up leaving them feeling overwhelmed.

Barty, a quarter-finalist in 2019, has broken through the draw in 2020, but has suffered a surprise semi-final loss to Sofia Kenin.

Karolina Muchova, a former Czech player, was in formidable form last year, but was relegated in three sets in the quarter-finals.

"I've had some really tough lessons, but also some incredible moments (in Australia)," said Barty, who is facing a difficult opening round against Lesia Tsurenko, a former U.S. Open quarter-finalist.

"Hopefully that puts me in good stead, for another year, another crack here, and we just keep going."

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