Naomi Osaka news: No tears of disappointment as ‘chill’ Japanese star sets sights on return to No 1

WTA Tour
Naomi Osaka arrives on court

She came up short in the final, but there were plenty of positives for Naomi Osaka at the Miami Open as the four-time Grand Slam winner admitted she is ready to chase down the world No 1 ranking again.

Osaka produced her best run of the year as she reached her first final since the 2021 Australian Open, but went down in straight sets against new world No 1 Iga Swiatek.

It was a lopsided final as Swiatek broke in game five of the opening set and then ran away with the match to win 6-4, 6-0.

Osaka had slipped to No 77 in the WTA Rankings after a poor year, but she is projected to move up to No 36 on the back of her Florida display.

It has been a difficult year for Osaka following her admission that she is struggling from depression and anxiety, but things are on the up again for the 24-year-old.

After initially saying she would like to get back in the top 10, the 24-year-old then set her sights a little higher.

“I think by next year or by the end of this year, I would love to be top 10,” Osaka said. “By next year I would love to be the No 1.

After initially trying to correct herself she added: “Oh, that’s a big statement. Erase that. Top 5. You know what? I’m going to set that goal. Top 1, yeah. No 1.

“It feels kind of good to chase something, and I think that maybe that’s a feeling that I have been missing, like wanting to strive to do better. For me, it’s cool to see where the level of No 1 is so I can find out if I can reach that.”

Coming up against the in-form Swiatek was always a tough ask as the Pole had won 16 matches before Saturday’s final and then made it 17-0 as she won her third consecutive WTA 100 final.

“Iga was quite different from all the players that I’ve played previously, so it was a bit hard to adjust to what she was doing,” Osaka said. “But I think hopefully if I play her next time, it will be a much better match.

“I’m not as disappointed as I normally would be. Normally, I would be crying in the locker room or something, but now I’m kind of chill. I feel like I know what I want to do better, and I just want to go back and start training again to hopefully win a tournament next time.”

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