Ashleigh Barty beats Danielle Collins to become first home Australian Open singles champion since 1978

    Ashleigh Barty is the first home singles Australian Open champion in more than four decades.

    (CNN)Ashleigh Barty became the first home Australian Open champion since 1978 after beating grand slam final debutante Danielle Collins 6-3 7-6 in Saturday's final.

    The world No. 1 was utterly dominant throughout the tournament and clinched a historic title without even dropping a set.
    Australian tennis fans had to wait more than four decades for one of their own to be crowned Australian Open champion, with the last home win coming courtesy of Chris O'Neil.
      Barty's grand slam tally now stands at three -- her previous titles coming at the French Open in 2019 and Wimbledon in 2021 -- and the 25-year-old is without a doubt currently the most dominant force on the women's tour.
        With most of her career likely still ahead of her, the only question remaining around Barty's grand slam credentials is: how many?
        "I've said numerous times I'm so lucky tonight to have numerous people here that love and support me," Barty said in her post-match interview. "I'm a fortunate and lucky girl to have so much love in my corner, we started together right from the start. We did it all together, nobody has changed from our team. I love you to death.
        "As an Aussie the most important part of this tournament is being able to share it with so many people and the crowd, you have been nothing short of exceptional.
          "This crowd is one of the most fun I've ever played in front of and you guys brought me so much joy today and helped me play my best tennis, so thanks for all your love and support over the last couple of weeks.
          "This is a dream come true for me and I am so proud to be an Aussie. See you next time."
          Australia's Ashleigh Barty celebrates after beating Danielle Collins.

          Blistering start

          Neither player showed any signs of nerves in the opening stages and exchanged some blistering shots early on.
          Collins' trademark backhand was causing Barty all sorts of problems, with the Aussie struggling to contain the powerful groundstroke as it ripped through the Rod Laver court.
          However, Barty was able to respond on her own serve, crushing an early 181km/h ace past her opponent as she managed to save an early break point -- much to the delight of the crowd.
          The partisan home support was certainly showing its allegiances early on, erupting each time Barty won a point. They were then really given something to cheers in Collins' third service game, as a couple of loose groundstrokes and a wild double fault gifted Barty a break of serve.
          That certainly helped release any tension Barty was still feeling, as the home favorite ripped off two more holds of serve to claim the opening set in the blink of an eye.
          Even Collins' reaching the final is one of the most remarkable comeback stories in tennis.
          In April last year, she underwent emergency surgery for endometriosis -- a condition where the tissue that lines the uterus grows outside of it -- and had suffered an abdominal injury at the French Open.
          Danielle Collins began dominating the second set.
          The 28-year-old has spoken candidly about the excruciating pain she endured, describing it as some of the worst she has experienced.
          Collin