Pre-tournament press conference with Ashleigh Barty
Q. How much more ready do you feel this year than last?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, I'm feeling good going into the match. It's a tough match this year against Dominika, but I'm looking forward to it.
Q. What did you take out of Hopman that you can utilize here?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Hopman Cup was an unbelievable week for me. I think I'm playing on Hisense Arena, quite a similar stadium, which will be good. I'm just looking forward to getting out there and giving it a rip.
Q. What do you think has changed in your game, improved the most?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: I think everything as a whole. My whole game has developed to a new level. Jason has worked really well with me to work on that. I'm feeling good, can't wait to get out there.
Q. What do you know about Dominika?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: I know she hits it hard. We played her in doubles last year here, so I've had the chance to hit the ball against her.
I haven't watched many of her recent matches, but I'm sure tonight I'll have a quick look and see what I'm going to do.
Q. Does Jason scout around to your opponents a bit, give you advice?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Yeah, if we don't know the player, then we both do that. We both know her pretty well. We know what we want to do out there. It's just about me going out there and trying to execute the game plan.
Q. Are you taller than her?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: I think I may be (smiling). Actually one of my mates said to me today, Sally said to me, 'You're taller than her'. Yeah, I'm hopefully still growing a bit more. Hopefully there's a few inches left in me.
Q. Melbourne Park has new facilities for players. What do you think about that for the players' future?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: The facility is amazing. We've been over there today. It's such a great facility. It's got everything we need over there. I'm sure when I'm down here training, we'll be using that a lot. The gym is good. The recovery is good. The courts are fantastic.
Tennis Australia has done a great job developing that. Yeah, we're really lucky to have such a good complex.
Q. I know you don't go into a match thinking you're going to win, but what shot do you give yourself, given how far you've come in the last 12 months?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: I don't really think too much about that. I just go out there and give it a go. If I go out there and think I can win the match, which I think I can, if I play well and I think I can do that.
I'll go out there and give it my best shot and see what happens.
Q. You've done a lot for someone that's only 16. What achievement are you the most proud of?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Well, I think I was very lucky at Hopman Cup to represent Australia. I think that's one of my most proudest moments.
Even in the juniors when you're representing your country, it's something really special. To be able to do that the last couple weeks, the way I played out there, it was really fun. I haven't enjoyed tennis that much for a long time. It was just so good to get out there, play in front of the crowd.
With Bernie as well, he did a great job. He's playing some great tennis. I'm sure he's going to be tough to beat this week.
Q. Will you two play mixed here?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: No, we're not playing mixed together here. He's focusing on his singles. I know he's going to have a good tournament. Hopefully he can go deep in the first week, and maybe into the second.
Q. Seeing him win a title at quite a young age, what does that do for the other youngsters in Australian tennis?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: He's been playing great all week in Sydney. I think that really transitioned well on from Hopman. He played really well there.
I think the other boys, like Benny Mitchell and Ducks can really look at him, see what he's achieving. It just comes down to hard work really. He had a good off season, so I'm sure he's going to have a good year ahead.
Q. Does the crowd support in Australia inspire you, make you nervous? How do you see it?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: It's great. It really is good to have the crowd support. It adds such a buzz to the air. Gets your adrenaline pumping so much.
Hopefully it's a pretty full stadium in Hisense tomorrow. Yeah, I can go out there and kind of use my crowd to my advantage a bit.
Q. You suck up the energy more than anything?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: Definitely. You can't not. I mean, there's so much energy out there. The crowd gets so into it. It's an awesome feeling to be out there. Especially when you first walk out, yeah, it's something you can't really explain.
Q. Who will be here in your entourage? Parents, siblings, school mates?
ASHLEIGH BARTY: A lot of family, a lot of family. I think there's about 15 all together. I haven't seen a lot of them yet. But, yeah, I'm sure I'll catch up with them after the match tomorrow.