FAITH Lutheran student Aurora Saltmarsh has only been playing tennis for a few months but her prowess on the court has seen her earn a rare slice of sporting history.
The 11-year-old Wynnum resident is the proud owner of Ash Barty's first ever racquet, having received it from the Ipswich-born tennis pro after winning a tournament at her school.
Saltmarsh had only been playing for a few weeks before taking out the competition and said that at the time, she did not have a complete grasp of the rules.
Barty, who also had a stint in professional cricket with the Brisbane Heat, presented Saltmarsh with the racquet in person after the tournament.
It now takes pride of place on a hook in her bedroom.
"The last couple of minutes before Ash Barty left she said 'Aurora, you can have this tennis racquet. It was mine when I first started playing," Saltmarsh said.
The grade five student also got to mingle with the tennis pro after the tournament and picked up some tricks of the trade.
"One of the skills she taught me is to jump when you try to stop the ball from going out," Saltmarsh said.
Barty is currently the world's number one ranked female tennis player, having won the French Open as recently as last year.
Saltmarsh said she did not know a whole lot about Barty going into the tournament but was aware of her ranking.
"I haven't seen much of her but have heard about her a lot," she said.
"I don't watch much tennis but when my dad puts it on I get really interested and start watching."
Saltmarsh has only been attending Faith Lutheran College at Victoria Point since last term but is set to become school captain in 2021.
She hails from a proud sporting family, with her mother Olivia Saltmarsh the number three ranked CrossFit athlete in Australia.
The 11-year-old said her other passions included touch football and soccer, both of which she trained for at school.
She enjoyed the fitness that came with sport and had a personal motto for her involvement.
"I just never give up, I keep on going," Saltmarsh said.
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