FILE PHOTO: Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – Might 30, 2021 Japan’s Naomi Osaka reacts throughout her first spherical match towards Romania’s Patricia Maria Tig REUTERS/Christian Hartmann
August 27, 2021
By Amy Tennery
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Naomi Osaka didn’t look like too fearful over her latest run of poor ends in the run as much as the U.S. Open and remained assured about possibilities of efficiently defending her title at Flushing Meadows.
The world quantity three picked up the Australian Open title in February however after withdrawing from the French Open and skipping the grasscourt season to guard her psychological well being, she has struggled to regain her prime type over the previous month.
Early defeats at each the Tokyo Olympics and in Cincinnati raised questions concerning the four-time Grand Slam champion’s type.
Nonetheless, the 23-year-old Japanese energy hitter stated she was completely satisfied along with her recreation.
“I really feel fairly pleased with how I’m enjoying. I believed I performed two actually robust matches in Cincinnati,” Osaka advised reporters at Flushing Meadows.
“In fact I’m not, like, declaring that I’ll do wonderful right here. For me, I’m the one-match-at-a-time like individual.”
Osaka is a perennial menace on Arthur Ashe since hoisting her maiden main trophy on the hardcourt main three years in the past, as world primary Ash Barty acknowledged.
“Naomi is a pure ball-striker. When she has time to arrange significantly after her first serve, she’s top-of-the-line first-serve, first-strike gamers I’ve ever come up towards,” stated Barty.
“On a tough courtroom, there’s not a number of variation on the bounce. She will arrange, belief the bounce, and actually swing by way of the road. I feel that’s what makes her so damaging on these courts.”
Her arrival in Flushing additionally comes amid new give attention to athletes’ psychological well being. Osaka withdrew from the French Open in June after being fined and threatened with expulsion for refusing to attend media conferences, saying her psychological well being was adversely impacted by the press obligations.
She disclosed that she had suffered from despair for years, drawing applause from her legions of followers for opening up a dialog on psychological well being.
“I really feel like there’s a number of issues that I did incorrect in that second, however I’m additionally the kind of individual that’s very within the second,” stated Osaka.
“There’s a number of issues that I realized to do higher. In fact, I don’t really feel the identical scenario will occur once more.”
(Reporting by Amy Tennery in New York, enhancing by Pritha Sarkar)