After passing the first round of the Roland Garros against Patricia Maria Tig, 23-year-old Naomi Osaka was due to face Ana Bogdan in the next match. However, due to the considerable psychological pressure exerted on her by the press, Naomi decided to retire directly from the Parisian Grand Slam and take a break: for this reason, she also gave up on Wimbledon.
Arriving in Tokyo for the Olympic Games, Osaka beat Saisai Zheng and Viktorija Golubic before surrendering to Marketa Vondrousova in two sets. Present in Cincinnati at the Western & Southern Open 2021, Naomi attended her first press conference in months.
However, things did not go at all as hoped: the Japanese star burst into tears after a question from a journalist, member of the Cincinnati Enquirer, who asked her how it was possible to exploit her prestige to give up dialogue with the Press.
"That reporter's bullying attitude is the reason why relations between players and the press are increasingly strained," commented Osaka manager Stuart Duguid later. Last year, Naomi defeated Ann Li, Karolina Muchova, Dajana Yastremska, Anett Kontaveit and Elise Mertens by breaking the pass for the final in Cincinnati, before forfeiting Belarusian Victoria Azarenka.
Born in 1997, Osaka has won two editions of the Australian Open and two of the US Open, as well as having occupied the first position of the WTA rankings for a total of 25 weeks. This year, the Japanese lost in the first match of the Internationals of Rome against the American player Jessica Pegula.
In Madrid she overtook her countrywoman Misaki Doi and then went out against Muchova in three sets. Besides Osaka and Doi, the only other Japanese player in the top 100 is Nao Hibino, currently at 72nd place in the world rankings.
The US Open in New York will begin on August 30th: Naomi will be defending the women's title, who last year beat Azarenka in the last challenge.
Cori Gauff praised Nick Kyrgios and Roger Federer
Cori Gauff is already a star of the WTA Tour: in her short career she can already boast the quarter-finals played at the Roland Garros and two titles on the women's tennis, namely those of Linz and Parma.
Already number 23 in the world a few weeks ago, today Coco occupies the 24th position in the women's ranking. A few days ago, Cori revealed in the course of an interesting interview all her admiration for the Australian Nick Kyrgios, with whom she also seems to have a pending double collaboration.
She said: "I met Nick when I was 12-years-old At 13 years I had the chance to train with him, we even got together in Miami for a tournament. I guess he remembers it now, but I don't know at the time. I think he asked me to play mixed doubles together because I did an interview with the ATP social account in which they asked me who I wanted to compete with.
I answered Nick. Then they asked me which player of the Tour I would have preferred to be friends with: I answered Nick this time too." Gauff then added: "I respect him a lot, as a person and as a tennis player. People don't know, but both he and Roger Federer are my two ideal."
Coco certainly cannot boast a long experience in doubles, however in this specialty she has already won three titles (Washington, Luxembourg and Parma) and played twice in the quarter-finals at the Australian Open in Melbourne.
As for Kyrgios, the Australian won the event in Lyon in 2018 together with the American Jack Sock. Cori did not take the field in Tokyo on the occasion of the Olympics as she was positive for Coronavirus.