There's a new tennis champ rising through the ranks and her name is Naomi Osaka. Born to a Haitian father and Japanese mother, 19-year-old Osaka defeated U.S. Open defending champ Angelique Kerber at Arthur Ashe Stadium on Tuesday. The 6-3, 6-1 win marked the first top 10 win of Osaka's career and a hard fought comeback for Osaka, who retired with an abdominal injury in Toronto earlier this month.
Hitting 22 winners to her opponents nine, Kerber had nothing but compliments for her young rival. "She just goes for it," said Kerber. "I think she took the chances and she played a very good match. But for me, it was for sure not the best day and not the best match."
Ranked 45th in the world, Osaka worked hard to get herself healthy and prepared for the final major of 2017. At last year's U.S. Open at Arthur Ashe Stadium, she led Madison Keys in the third round match but was unable to close a victory. Tuesday's win was a much-needed redemption for the rising tennis star. "It means a lot, especially since last time I was here.This court has not given me fond memories but hopefully, this overtakes that," she told the BBC. "When it was 4-1 today I was thinking, 'I really hope I don't do what I did last year' and that let me focus a lot."
We've got our eye on you, Naomi Osaka. We look forward to great things to come!