So what’s next for Ash Barty – family time, friends, a baby?

Don’t count out a professional golf career for Australia’s retired tennis world No.1 and sporting super talent.

A proven former cricketer who played in the WBBL and boasting a swing that’s wowed even Tiger Woods, Barty has already been lauded for possessing “all the tools” to be a golf pro.

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Even her father isn’t ruling it out.

As a former state amateur player himself, like his wife Josie, Rob Barty knows enough about golf to realise how capable his daughter is.

“She’s too good. She can beat me. She’s the best golfer in the house,” Rob Barty told AAP.

“She plays off a three handicap around Brookwater (in Brisbane) and plays a couple of times a year.

“I don’t know what she’s going to do to be honest, but I know she gets a lot of enjoyment out of golf so I think she’ll play (more).

“But I don’t know what she’ll do (professionally).”

Ash Barty is a scratch golfer and lives beside a golf course in Brisbane.
Ash Barty is a scratch golfer and lives beside a golf course in Brisbane. Credit: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Given her parents’ pedigree, it’s no surprise Barty often says she comes from “a golfing family”.

Now she’s marrying into one, having met her now-fiance Garry Kissick six years ago when he was a trainee pro and PGA planner at Brookwater.

And four years after popping into the pro shop where she met Kissick, Barty won the women’s A grade club championship with a commanding seven-and-five triumph in the match play final.

The men’s club champion that year, Louis Dobbelaar, a two-time Queensland amateur champion, said he had no doubts Barty could make it professionally in golf.

“She’s got all the tools if she wants to pursue it. If she put her mind to it, I’m sure she could,” Dobbelaar told AAP.

“I’ve seen quite a lot of golfers come from different sports and she’s the one that stands out the most – by far actually.

“Her ball-striking’s really good. She just gets that naturally from tennis, the hand-eye stuff.”

Ash Barty was tight-lipped about a golf career at Thursday’s press conference in Brisbane.
Ash Barty was tight-lipped about a golf career at Thursday’s press conference in Brisbane. Credit: Chris Hyde/Getty Images

The three-time grand slam champion was coy when asked on Thursday if a golf career may be on the horizon, but also didn’t rule out the possibility.

“We’ll wait and see,” Barty said.

“I’ve got to try and learn how to hit the middle of the club face before I can think of trying to get on the Tour.”

Bookmakers have already framed a market on the sports Barty may pursue, with golf the favourite ahead of a return to cricket or the die-hard Richmond fan switching to the AFLW.

“I’ve seen a little bit,” Barty said of the speculation.

“Yeah. I love sport. I’m a sport nut, like a lot of Australians are. I’ll be lured to it.

“I have always been an athlete in the sense of trying different things but we’ll see how we go.”

Ash Barty
The immensely gifted Ash Barty stunned the sporting world with Wednesday’s retirement announcement. Credit: AAP

Tennis great hints at next move

The comments from Barty’s dad come after her close friend and tennis great Renae Stubbs opened up on her shock retirement from tennis, and her career options moving forward.

Stubbs said she “wouldn’t be surprised” if Ash went on to pursue a career in another sport, just like she did after her previous retirement from tennis in 2014.

At just 16, Barty famously quit tennis to focus on her mental health, before picking up cricket and seamlessly joining the Brisbane Heat for the inaugural season of the Women’s Big Bash in 2015.

Stubbs said a similar switch could soon be on the cards for the supremely gifted athlete, with a number of sports giving her the opportunity to remain based in Australia.

“Tennis doesn’t make her happy anymore – the travel, the grind, the practice, all of it. She wants to move on to something else,” Stubbs told Channel 7’s Sunrise.

Ash barty
Ash Barty is happily retired at age 25 and it’s a wake-up call for the industry, say sports experts. Credit: AAP

“Don’t be surprised if we see her walk down the fairway of an LPGA (golf) event.

“We know she can play cricket, we know that she’s basically a scratch golfer … she can kick a footy and can probably walk on for an AFLW team.

“I think she’s got a few things up her sleeve that she wants to achieve.

“And she’s young enough and smart enough (to make the change).”

Stubbs, who won four Grand Slam doubles titles, said she wasn’t overly surprised by Barty’s decision to retire, knowing that she’d already achieved all she wanted in tennis.

“She’s No.1 in the world, she’s won multiple grand slams, her ego is not attached to winning anymore,” Stubbs said.

“Her ego is satisfied now, she knows that she’s conquered the tennis world, she has done everything she wanted to do and she’s happy walking way.”