Barty’s second brutal Wimbledon snub
At least Channel 7 can't be blamed for this one.
After the network prioritised Nick Kyrgios's Tuesday night match against Jordan Thompson over Ash Barty's first round clash at Wimbledon, the Aussie golden girl has again been snubbed.
RELATED: Seven criticised for Barty snub
Despite entering the iconic grand slam as the top seed and No. 1 ranked player in the world, Barty still won't make an appearance on Centre Court at the All England Club because her second round match against Alison Van Uytvanck not deemed worthy of gracing the main stage.
Instead, she'll be playing on Court No. 2 while local British hopes and Kyrgios strut their stuff on Centre Court.
After beginning her campaign with a straight sets win over Saisai Zheng on Court 1, Barty could well have expected to be promoted to what Kyrgios described earlier in the week as the best court in tennis. Instead, she'll have to win to keep any hopes of making it to Centre Court later in the tournament alive.
Addressing the contentious decision, a Wimbledon spokesperson said: "As always, the scheduling of the order of play each day at The Championships is a complex operation. We take great care when scheduling matches and allocating courts.
"All decisions are made with fairness and the best interests of the tournament, players, spectators and our worldwide broadcast audience at heart."
However, not everyone was so accepting of the call to keep Barty off Centre Court.
Yes, Australian Open favours Australians. But does it treat world numbers one like that?— Adam Peacock (@adampeacock3) July 3, 2019
Lots of agendas and stars to juggle but agree with Adam.— Christopher Clarey (@christophclarey) July 3, 2019
New women's No. 1 & new French Open champ belongs on Centre https://t.co/QWVVz5vN0z
Wimbledon organisers have overlooked Barty to instead promote a local flavour on Centre Court on Thursday. British star and World No. 55 Cameron Norrie will kick things off at 11am local time against Japan's Kei Nishikori, while the UK's top ranked female Johanna Konta, seeded 19th, will follow against Czech Katerina Siniakova.
Finishing up the Centre Court action for the day will be Kyrgios and Rafael Nadal, who set up a juicy rematch of their 2014 epic by each winning in round one.
Nadal accused Kyrgios of being disrespectful after a loss in Mexico this year and the Aussie later branded the King of Clay "super salty", so there will be plenty of interest in what shapes as the biggest match of the round.
But whether the Canberra product and two Brits deserve top billing over Barty, the best female player in the world, is up for debate.
Also shunted from the main venue are three multi-time Wimbledon champions. Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Petra Kvitova are all scheduled to play on Court No. 1 on Thursday.
Kvitova opens proceedings against Kristina Mladenovic, Federer faces 20-year-old Brit Jay Clarke and Williams vs Kaja Juvan will be the last match.
Nothing seems to ruffle Barty, so it's doubtful she'll have any qualms about her Centre Court snubbing. She'll just get on with the job of, hopefully, winning, which she's made a habit of in recent times.
The likeable Queenslander cemented herself as a national hero by winning her maiden grand slam singles title at the French Open last month, then backed that up by overtaking Naomi Osaka at the top of the WTA rankings by claiming the trophy at the Nature Valley Classic as she tuned up for Wimbledon on the grass courts of Birmingham.
After breezing past Zheng 6-4 6-2 earlier this week, Barty took her impressive form onto the doubles court alongside Victoria Azarenka on Wednesday. The powerful duo made easy work of Lidziya Marozava and Storm Sanders, combining for a 6-0 6-1 demolition job on Court 17.
"You know, playing with Ash is always really fun," Azarenka said afterwards. "We had a good time, and we played well today.
"I felt like a lot of balls were on the racquet. It felt like it today. We had a good first grass court doubles match."