Naomi Osaka claims scalp of her ‘favourite player’ Serena Williams
Naomi Osaka has beaten another big-name player as she saw off Serena Williams in the first round at the Miami Open
The 20-year-old secured her maiden WTA title last week when she won the Indian Wells Masters and en route she dispatched Maria Sharapova, Karolina Pliskova and world No 1 Simona Halep.
And now she has added Williams to her list as she beat the 23-time Grand Slam winner 6-3, 6-2 in one hour and 17 minutes in Key Biscayne.
The winning continues for @Naomi_Osaka_!
— WTA (@WTANaomi Osaka has beaten another big-name player as she saw off Serena Williams in the first round at the Miami Open) March 21, 2018
“I was extremely nervous coming on the court. I don’t know if anyone knows this but Serena is my favourite player,” the Japanese player said. “Just playing against her is kind of like a dream for me, so I’m very grateful, and it’s even better that I was able to win.”
Osaka added: “She’s the main reason why I started playing tennis, and just, I have seen her on TV so many times and I have always been cheering for her, so for me to play against her, and just sort of trying to detach myself a little bit from thinking that I’m playing against her and just try to think I’m playing against just a regular opponent was a little bit hard for me.”
Third seed Garbine Muguruza advanced without stepping onto the court as 16-year-old Amanda Anisimova was unable to play due to an ankle injury.
Three-times Miami winner Victoria Azarenka had no problems seeing off Catherine Bellis as she beat the American 6-3, 6-0.
“I’m happy that I’m playing,” the Belarusian, who is playing in only her second tournament in eight months due to a protracted custody battle, said. “I don’t want to be over-the-moon happy, because I’m still in the tournament, and I want to continue to reach any heights and new goals.”
Also through are Monica Puig, Petra Martic, Monica Niculescu, Alize Cornet, Ekaterina Makarova and Andrea Petkovic.
‘It was nerve-racking, it was so intense’ – Stefanos Tsitsipas after battling past Alexander Zverev
Stefanos Tsitsipas prevailed in five sets against Alexander Zverev.
‘I’m just going to have fun,’ says Barbora Krejcikova as she looks to win a French Open double
Krejcikova will feature in singles and doubles finals.
‘There is a real buzz of anticipation,’ says Tim Henman ahead of Wimbledon return
The 2020 Championships were cancelled due to Covid-19.
Johanna Konta edges closer to ending her title drought after reaching Viking Open semi-finals
Johanna Konta two wins away from securing her first WTA Tour title since 2017.
Roger Federer ‘pretty positive about his chances’ as he looks to step up a gear on grass
“I’ve only seen improvement, no setbacks,” says Roger Federer.
2021 French Open women’s final info, form, betting and preview: Barbora Krejcikova-Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
All the info ahead of the 2021 French Open women’s final.
Tennis365’s live scores and results centre: Follow day three from the 2021 French Open here…
Catch the live action from Roland Garros with our scores centre…
Maria Sakkari laments ‘rookie mistake’ during French Open semi-final, but vows to ‘learn from it’
“Today’s loss hurts a lot because I was so close,” says Sakkari.
Boris Becker’s tip to Novak Djokovic ahead of Rafael Nadal clash: ‘Go hard at the Spaniard’s forehand’
Boris Becker shares thoughts on Novak Djokovic-Rafael Nadal semi-final.
French Open day 12: Maria Sharapova shows love to Barbora Krejcikova and a silver lining for French tennis
The story of the 12th day of action at Roland Garros.