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Naomi Osaka Wins the Australian Open

Naomi Osaka, wins the Australian Open this Saturday. 3 years ago she won the first tour-level women’s championship . Naomi grabbed her trophy in an awkward manner and smiled, turning her back to the microphone as well. She said “This is probably going to be, like, the worst acceptance speech of all time”. There is a discrepancy in between Naomi’s tenacity during the plays and her off-court personality.

Saturday, Naomi Osaka wins in the Australian Open final. Prevailing over Serena Williams in their semifinal match on Thursday. A similar event took place with Brady more than five months ago. The latter match provided 3 sets of captivating, baseline tennis, probably the best match of 2020. However, Saturday’s match was less enticing. Both Brady and Osaka can serve so that they can earn easy points, aces or service winners when their first servers are hitting their spots. This Saturday though, their first servers weren’t in even half the time with each player’s fair share of unforced errors. It’s hard to tell if this happened on an emotional basis or anything else.

Naomi Osaka emerges victorious on Saturday's Australian Open

The venue

However, it was obvious from the start that almost every serve or return, Osaka was trying to find Brady’s backhand. Brandy came up rather slow as a top woman player. She did not stand up in her junior years, she spent two years at UCLA before entering the pro league. Regardless, she always had a strong, explosive forehand. Nevertheless, she is not in the possession of a top-ten backhand, not yet at least. It still takes her time to set up the shot.

On Saturday, Osaka displayed extended time for setting the shot up. Brady’s backhands flew wide, long or quailed over the net and fell short or mid court where Osaka would forehand the ball in an obvious acute and out of reach angle.

The match

Brady didn’t give up easily in the first set. After having been broken on a double fault, she broke back immediately. She went up 40–15 to stay on serve and even the match at 5–5. Then it all went down the rabbit whole fast , as it can in tennis: a third-shot error; another double fault, to level the game at deuce; a forehand long; and a short sitter unforgivably thrashed into the net, and she’d lost the set. Osaka then rushed to a 4–0 lead in the second set, and that was more or less that. The crowd, filling the seats at a socially distanced half capacity, rose and roared for Osaka at the match’s end—and how thrilling it was, even for the cross the world TV watchers, to have those fans back! Osaka gently raised her racquet above her head in victory, and that awkward smile spread across her face.

The finale

Osaka came on on the ceremonial platform, moments afterward, as a young athlete who’d become a global celebrity working to change the world, and change what it means to be a young athlete, through her campaigning for racial and social justice. She was putting that aura of hers to use. (She’s also recognized as the highest paid female athlete according to Forbes.) She held the trophy in a less awkward manner than she did three years ago, at Indian Wells, which is no surprise. Osaka did encounter setbacks along the way, at last year’s Australian Open, she lost in the third round, in straight sets, by Coco Gauff. In any case her losses, and her Zen growth mindset of quietly acknowledging them and carrying forward. This attitude deepened the connection she has with her fans, millions of whom follow her on social media. After Naomi Osaka won the Australian Open, she turned to Brady to congratulate her and said “I told everyone that would listen that you’re gonna be a problem, and I was right.”

To wrap up, Osaka seems to be the only athlete under 25 within the championship leagues and a pop-like allure.

Source:

Naomi Osaka, the Most Thrilling Athlete of Her Generation, Wins the Australian Open | The New Yorker

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