World number one Ash Barty became the first Australian woman to win Wimbledon in 41 years by beating Karolina Pliskova in a tense battle on Centre Court. The top seed realised her dream of being crowned champion at the All England Club for the first time in a rollercoaster 6-3 6-7 (4-7) 6-3 victory.
Pliskova warmed to the task after making a nightmare start in a clash between two first-time finalists at SW19, but Barty was not to be denied her second grand slam title two years after her first at the French Open. The Queenslander ended a wait for an Australian woman to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish that stretched back to 1980, when her mentor Evonne Goolagong Cawley won the title.
Pliskova fought back from a break down twice to win the second set, yet Barty regrouped to become only the fourth junior Wimbledon champion to go on and win the women's title. Barty began with a commanding hold and followed that up with a break to love, sealed with a backhand winner down the line following a sumptuous lob.
A second Barty ace put her 3-0 up and although Pliskova finally won a first point at the 15th attempt, a tentative double fault left the favourite only two games away from wrapping up the first set. Pliskova was finally on the board at 4-1 when the favourite was broken in an error-strewn game, but the Czech's usually venomous serve was not firing and Barty served out the set at the second attempt.
The 2016 US Open runner-up continued to look uncertain, with Barty taking advantage to go a break up at 2-1, but Pliskova hit back impressively, unleashing a thunderous forehand winner down the line and sealing a swift break back when Barty netted a forehand.
There was a raise of the left hand from Pliskova following a scorching backhand winner during a comfortable hold and although a poor backhand left her 6-5 down, Barty was unable to serve out the match.
Pliskova played with an increasing level of freedom, demonstrating her incredible power with deep, fearsome groundstrokes in a tie-break that ended with a double fault from Barty.
The former world number one gifted the momentum back to Barty when she missed a simple volley at the net to trail 2-0 in the decider.
Pliskova showed flashes of brilliance as she made Barty, who withdrew from the French Open last month with a hip injury, work until the end, but served it out, sealing victory when her opponent netted a backhand.