Ash Barty won't defend her season-ending crown after formally ending her stellar 2021 season on Saturday - missing out on a potential $6.7million payday in the process.
Australia's world No.1 hasn't played since the US Open in September and says her full focus now is on preparing for the Australian summer and another tilt at her home grand slam in Melbourne.
In the meantime she will rest up at home in Brisbane with family and her boyfriend, 30 year old pro golfer Garry Kissick.
The 25-year-old added another five titles to her credit this season, including a second major at Wimbledon in July, and is assured of ending as year-end No.1 for a third straight campaign.
Wimbledon winner Ash Barty won't defend her season-ending crown after formally ending her stellar 2021 season on Saturday - missing out on a potential $6.7million payday in the process
Barty has decided to take the rest of 2021 off and spend some time with boyfriend Garry Kissick
In July Barty became the first Australian woman to win Wimbledon in 41 years after Evonne Goolagong Cawley.
The winner of the Akron WTA Finals Guadalajara from November 10 to 17 this year gets US$5million, which is just under A$6.7million.
She took home $3million for winning Wimbledon but is one of the top 20 all-time earners in the women's game with $21million in career prizemoney.
Barty pocketed the biggest cheque in tennis history for $6.4 million after winning the WTA Finals in Shenzhen in 2019 before last year's edition was cancelled because of the pandemic.
Not wanting to endure a second two-week stint in quarantine in barely two months, having returned home to Queensland in September, Barty opted against travelling to the relocated 2021 WTA Finals in Mexico.
'I wanted to let everyone know that I won't be competing in any further tournaments in 2021, including the WTA Finals in Mexico,' Barty said in a statement on Saturday.
'It was a difficult decision but I need to prioritise my body and my recovery from our 2021 season and focus on having the strongest pre-season for the Australian summer.'
'With ongoing challenges of travelling back to Queensland and quarantine requirements, I am not willing to compromise my preparation for January.'
Barty's best previous result at the Australian Open was losing in the semi-final in January 2020.
'I wish the WTA team and the players all the best for a successful WTA Finals and the rest of the year.'