We were aiming for top 10 – Barty in awe after claiming number one status
Ashleigh Barty's dream has become reality after she reached the world number one ranking with her Birmingham Classic triumph.
French Open champion Barty followed up her win at Roland Garros with a hugely impressive display in her first grass-court tournament of the season.
And a 6-3 7-5 win against her doubles partner Julia Goerges on Sunday ensured the Australian will replace Naomi Osaka at the top of the WTA rankings just under a week before the start of Wimbledon.
"It's just been the most incredible journey for myself and my team," Barty said during the trophy ceremony, after becoming the second woman from Australia to be crowned number one in the world.
"You always dream of number one as a little kid but for it to become a reality is incredible.
"It's not something that was even in my realm this year; we were aiming to be top 10 and now to be where we are is a testament to the people around me who've been with me these last three years.
"It has been such an amazing journey. We started from scratch, without a ranking, and to be where we are is a massive achievement for me and for them. It's a dream come true."
Barty did not have it easy against Goerges, who she reached the semi-finals of the doubles tournament with before both players decided to withdraw to focus on their singles bout.
"I couldn't think of a better person to share the court with," Barty said of world number 19 Goerges. "We had an incredible week in singles and doubles. You're one of my best friends on tour."
Barty had to hold her nerve to win set one, but Goerges rallied in the second to force the 23-year-old to serve to stay in the set.
But the title was decided when Goerges looped a backhand wide and Barty comfortably held her serve to seal a victory that puts her well among the favourites for Wimbledon.