The Australian Open’s thrilling fourth round is moving into a third set, with Naomi Osaka and Ashleigh Barty still battling it out for the right to take on Serena Williams in their potential showdown.
Naomi Osaka and Ashleigh Barty have moved into the third round of the Australian Open. They are closer to a potential showdown at the tournament if they both win their next matches. Read more in detail here: naomi tennis player.
MELBOURNE, VICTORIA, AUSTRALIA — The second round of the Australian Open was everything but pleasant for Madison Brengle in the opening set, thanks to Naomi Osaka’s renewed love of the game.
In the opening four games of Wednesday’s match, the reigning champion allowed just four points and blasted forehand winners apparently at whim, cruising to a 6-0 victory in under 20 minutes.
The second set began with Brengle celebrating a service hold like she’d just run a long-distance marathon, but the No. 54-ranked American progressively wore down Osaka until she eventually converted a break-point opportunity in the seventh game, after squandering her first nine opportunities.
That sparked a response from the former No. 1-ranked Osaka, who broke back right away and won the last nine games to secure a 6-0, 6-4 triumph. She ended with 37 victories and 32 blunders.
The next opponent for Osaka will be Amanda Anisimova, a 20-year-old American who defeated Olympic gold medallist Belinda Bencic 6-2, 7-5. In the fourth round, the winner is expected to meet top-ranked Ash Barty.
After defeating Madison Brengle 6-0, 6-4 in the third round of the Australian Open, Naomi Osaka remarked, “The aim for me is simply to have fun.” Andy Brownbill/AP Photo
Last year, Osaka won her fourth Grand Slam championship at the Australian Open, but she subsequently withdrew from the French Open and missed Wimbledon to focus on her mental health. She was then knocked out of the US Open early.
She is undefeated in five matches in Australia this year after an extended offseason to refocus.
When asked how she judged her form, Osaka responded she doesn’t rate her own.
“In an on-court TV interview, she stated, “Honestly, I’m trying not to do that.” “I’m a bit of a control freak. I’ll never be pleased if I compare myself to the past.
“For me, the aim is simply to have a good time… [and] I believe we’re doing that.”
Since the first major of the year was announced, all eyes have been on a possible matchup between Osaka and Barty, the 2021 Wimbledon and 2019 French Open winner who is trying to become the first Australian woman to win her home title since 1978.
When the event celebrated its first First Nations Day, Barty was front and center, although for just 52 minutes, when she defeated 142nd-ranked qualifier Lucia Bronzetti 6-1, 6-1.
“It was good for me to be a part of it in the manner that I felt most at ease,” Barty, who is of Indigenous ancestry, said of the day devoted to Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. “As an athlete, I can express myself on the tennis court, and as a human, I can express myself as well.
“It was amazing for me to be able to play a tiny part doing what I love on a day when we’re bringing cultures together, bringing people together… it was great for me to be able to play a small role doing what I love.”
Also on Wednesday, fourth-seeded Barbora Krejcikova advanced to the third round, where she will face No. 26 Jelena Ostapenko, as did No. 5 Maria Sakkari, No. 8 Paula Badosa, and No. 15 Elina Svitolina, who will face two-time Australian Open winner Victoria Azarenka.
Svitolina was ahead 6-3, 5-7, 5-1 when Harmony Tan quit with a left leg injury. Svitolina remained on the court until Tan was wheeled off.
“When an athlete is wounded during a tournament, it’s always a nightmare. Svitolina remarked, “She played quite well and made it difficult for me.” “It’s difficult to watch a guy retire like way.”
Number 21 Jessica Pegula defeated fellow American Bernarda Pera 6-4, 6-4, while Madison Keys defeated Jaqueline Cristian 6-2, 7-5.
This article was written with the help of the Associated Press.
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