In a highly controversial win; Naomi Osaka’s win over tennis legend Serena Williams might have been overshadowed by Williams’ outburst on the court. The young tennis player from Japan comes from humble beginnings and often declared Serena Williams as her idol; only to bring her icon’s winning streak to an end. Here are a few things you should know about Naomi Osaka.
1. Naomi Osaka is only 20-years-old.
Born in 1997, her father is Haitian-American and her mother is Japanese.
2. Naomi has an older sister Mari Osaka.
The duo has played together in doubles tennis. Her sister is ranked 289 internationally.
3. Osaka moved from Japan at age 3.
She and her family currently reside in Fort Lauderdale in Florida. She enjoys dual citizenship from America and Japan, however, the young tennis player is not fluent in Japanese.
4. Her career’s turning point came in 2016.
Osaka entered the top 50 of the WTA rankings and was voted “Newcomer of the Year” in the 2016 WTA Awards.
5. She previously beat Venus Williams in 2017.
According to Eurosport, “Osaka is one of the most exciting young players in the women’s game and the Japanese-American achieved her career-best win ranking-wise with a 7-5 6-2 victory over world number five Williams.” She would later face the woman she idolized; Serena William the tennis legend who has more Grand Slam titles than Osaka’s time on planet Earth.
6. She was ranked at number 68 internationally only a few months before playing and beating Serena Williams.
Her match with Serena was a big deal for the talented player. Representing Japan, Osaka’s semifinal with Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine would be the first time a Japanese would be at semis since Kimiko Date at Wimbledon in 1996. Osaka also told the crowd how she believes her game has evolved this season. She started the year ranked No. 68 and has climbed to No. 19, according to a report by USA TODAY.
7. The Grand Slam win earned her a huge payday.
Naomi Osaka made bank with the bug win over Serena Williams. As a Grand Slam finals winner, Osaka walked away with Ksh263M the equivalent of 2.25M Euros.