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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Sunday September 5, 2021

Saturday was a tough night in Arthur Ashe Stadium for World No.1 Ashleigh Barty, as she fell in three sets to Shelby Rogers in third-round action, but the Aussie had nothing but respect for the American after the match – and Rogers returned that respect in full.

After the match, Rogers was asked about her relationship with the World No.1.

“She is one of the most professional people I've ever met in my life, as well as a good person, a funny individual,” rogers said. “Just refreshing to see. She's super down-to-earth. I mean, she is one of my favorite people.”

Rogers won for the first time against Barty in six meetings. The South Carolina native said that earlier in the season, after losing four times to Barty, she couldn’t be mad about it because she is too fond of the Aussie.

“I was joking before, every time I lost to her, I can't be mad because she's such a nice person,” she said. “It's like, Man, she just kicked my butt. Then it's like, Oh, you're going to find it one day."


Rogers, who faces Emma Raducanu in the round of 16, feels that the tennis world is taking Barty's accomplishments for Granted this year.

“She's always encouraging to everybody around her. She brings up the energy wherever she goes. I can't say how much respect I have for her and what a great representative she is for women's tennis. I want to speak to what she's done this season. I think a lot of people are taking it for granted. She hasn't been able to go home since February, you guys. That's insane. I mean, she's resetting on the road. She's worked through some injuries on the road. She's won five titles. She's remained No. 1. I mean, this girl is everything every player wants to be, you know. Honestly, I could do this for another 20 minutes. But, I mean, yeah, she's one of my favorite people, so... Any time I get to give her a hug, I try to take the moment.”


Barty, even after a difficult loss, returned the favor, praising Rogers after her character win.

“There are certain people on the tour that I think no matter the result you know you're always going to get a genuine handshake, a smile, you're going to get that genuine respect,” Barty said. “For me Shelby has always been one of those people. She's one that I respect, one of the most that I respect on tour, and she's an incredible person. Tonight she showed a lot of fight.”

Barty gets that it was a big moment for Rogers, and she was genuinely happy for her.

“I could see she was enjoying herself,” she said. “I think that's the most important thing for both of us, we had a lot of fun out there. I know regardless of the result, it never changes our relationship, and that's really special when you've got someone who is just a class act off and on the court.

“It sucks in tennis that there's a winner and loser every single day, but sometimes you don't mind losing to certain people. I think Shelby in a sense of her personality and her character, she's certainly one of those for me.”

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