Serena Williams And Naomi Osaka Face Each Other Again, This Time In The Australian Open Semifinals
Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka. When you match these two tennis players against each other, you may recall the 2018 US Open:
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The Washington Post details the controversy that happened in that match: “During the second set, the chair umpire warned Williams about violating rules by getting signals from her coach. Williams disputed that and told him she was not a cheater. She received another code violation when she smashed her racket onto the court after Osaka had broken her serve. Under WTA and Grand Slam rules, that cost her a point. Two games later, she demanded that the umpire apologize for ‘stealing’ a point from her.”
“I know you guys were here rooting, and I was rooting, too, but let’s make this the best moment we can,” Williams said to the crowd after the match per The Washington Post. “We’ll get through it … Let’s not boo anymore. Let’s get through this.”
You may be surprised to hear that this wasn’t their only match as The Washington Post notes they played each other four times, including that US Open match, with the series being tied at two-a-piece.
It’s now 2021 and the stage is in Australia.
The Australian Open semifinals, to be exact. And it’d be another Williams and Osaka match, this time from ‘Down Under’. That would make this the fifth time the two would play against each other.
Game, set, match
Osaka won the match in two sets and advanced to the finals.
“Melbourne and my Australian fans- Today was not (the) ideal outcome or performance but it happens…” Williams said in an Instagram post. “Today was not ideal outcome or performance but it happens… I am so honored to be able to play in front of you all. Your support -your cheers, I only wish I could have done better for you today. I am forever in debt and grateful to each and everyone single one of you. I love you. I love you. I love you. I adore you.”
“I’m most proud of how mentally strong I’ve become,” Osaka said per a WTA Insider. “The quarantine process and seeing everything that’s going on in the world, it put a lot into perspective. I used to weigh my entire existence on if I won or lost a tennis match. That’s just not how I feel any more.”
“It’s always an honour playing her,” Osaka said after the match about Williams via The Guardian. “I didn’t want to go out without trying my best…I was a little kid watching her play and just to be on the court playing against her for me is a dream.”
Here’s the highlights from the match:
“My young aspirations owe so much to Serena and Venus,” Osaka wrote in a column for The Telegraph last month per ESPN. “Without those trailblazers, there would be no Naomi, no Coco [Gauff], no Sloane [Stephens], no Madison [Keys]. Everything we did was inspired by them, and my sister and I would dream about one day playing them in a Grand Slam final.”
Osaka will now play Jennifer Brady in the Australian Open Final.
Charlie Lapastora is a sports/news multimedia journalist who’s reported, written, produced, anchored, shot video/edited on different NBC, ABC, and FOX shows in multiple TV markets, along with digital & new media companies. Charlie has traveled the country telling national sports, news, feature, and original stories on a cable news network, airing on top 10 TV markets, satellite radio, and digital platforms. He is passionate about his faith, family—being a husband to whom he calls the G.O.A.T. of women—about reppin’ his home state of Michigan and Detroit teams (yes, including the Lions), good coffee, and loves how sports brings people together. He’s traveled the world leading and coaching sports camps and has also worked at the Detroit Pistons and LA Clippers’ NBA teams.
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