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Posted under: News

Naomi Osaka Scores Fourth Grand Slam Title With Her Australian Open Win

The young tennis phenom faced-off against legend Serena Williams to get to her final round match against Jennifer Brady.

Japan's young tennis phenom Naomi Osaka scored her fourth Grand Slam title winning her final match in the Australian Open, 6-4, 6-3 against American Jennifer Brady. 

The recent win is Osaka's second Australian Open title. According to USA Today, the title match marked her 21st consecutive win since last February and she is now 4-0 in Grand Slam titles, having previously scored two U.S. Open titles. The 23-year-old now holds a better title record than most active women's tennis players except for Kim Clijsters, Serena Williams and Venus Williams. 

While the match marked Brady's first showing in a Slam final, Osaka has made a name for herself honing her skills by facing off with tennis legends like Serena, who she defeated in the match just before her final round. 

Serena praised Osaka at a press conference following their semi-finals match, as Blavity previously reported

“I feel like she does everything well, she has a good serve, she has a great return, she’s strong on both sides,” Williams said.

Similar to the love she received from Serena, the Grand Slam champion lauded her opponent during her victory speech. 

"I told everyone who would listen that you're going to be a problem," Osaka said. "I was right. It's really incredible to play you and see your growth over the past few months. It's cool for me to see and I know that you're probably working very hard, so I want to congratulate your team over there too." 

Osaka also acknowledged the fans whom she remarked she had almost grown used to not being around since COVID-19 changed the way matches had been played. 

"Thank you for opening your hearts and your arms towards us, I think for sure playing a Grand Slam right now is a super privilege that I won't take for granted," she said. 

The privilege, however, belonged to the competition.

"It's a privilege for us to watch you @naomiosaka," the Twitter account for the Australian Open wrote, sharing a video of Osaka's acceptance speech. 

Recently named one of the Associated Press's athletes of the year, Osaka has been known to not only take her tennis skills to the court but advocacy as well. She famously wore the names of seven victims of police killings on a variety of face masks on the way to her second U.S. Open title last fall. As Blavity previously reported, the Japanese-Haitian athlete said she felt a responsibility to use her platform to start important conversations. 

"[W]atching the police injustices like George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Jacob Blake (to name just a few) in the summer broke my heart. I am proud of my U.S. Open victory, but more so that I got people talking about the real issues," she wrote in an email interview with the AP.

USA Today reported that with two Australian Open and two U.S. Open titles under her belt, the young tennis star may soon set her sights on finally advancing to the finals of the French Open and Wimbledon, neither of which she's ever advanced past the third round in her combined seven tourney appearances. 

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Leslie D. Rose is a Jersey-born, Xavier-educated veteran journalist, editor, photographer, and poet. She is also a lipstick aficionado, Babyface superfan, loving cat mother, and her whole Blatina self at all times. She is the Copy Editor and Weekend Editor at Blavity News.