Naomi Osaka, tennis world’s number two, got off to a fast start in the French Open on Sunday, defeating Patricia Maria Tig 6-4, 7-6(4) on the first day of the event. With the triumph, the Japanese tennis superstar extended her Grand Slam winning run to 15 matches.
Due to COVID-19 limits in France, the claycourt major will initially welcome up to 1,000 fans at each of the three main show courts. In contrast, the lesser courts will be authorized to admit 35 percent of their capacity for the first ten days.
Naomi Osaka advanced to the second round after defeating Tig in a tense second set, which lasted one hour and 47 minutes. The 23-year-old, who has won her previous two majors but did not compete in last year’s French Open, aims for her fifth Grand Slam victory and the first on a surface other than hard court.
Her 15th Grand Slam victory in a row, albeit it was far from easy against Tig, who had won a championship on clay in Istanbul in September. Tig avoided a breakpoint and a match point to force a second-set tiebreak, but Osaka grabbed control in the last seconds. Despite 35 unforced errors, she had 39 victories on first serve and an 89 percent victory percentage, winning 13 of her 16 net points.
Naomi Osaka, the tennis world’s number two, defeated Patricia Maria Tig of Romania 6-4 7-6(4) in their second career match. The first since 2015 to advance to the second round of the French Open, where she is going up against Ana Bogdan, another Romanian.
French Open Off Court Developments
In the lead-up to the claycourt major, the world number two said she would skip press briefings in Paris to spread awareness of players’ mental health. Claiming that journalists’ queries are like “kicking a person when they are down.”
“Naomi Osaka opted out of her contractual media responsibilities today. As a result, she was fined $15,000 by the Roland Garros referee.”
“I’ve often felt that people have no regard for athletes’ mental health, and this rings true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one,” she added.
The four Grand Slams’ boards also stated that the organizers of the French Open had requested Osaka to reconsider her decision. Following Noami Osaka’s announcement that she will be avoiding press conferences, the French Open organizers were blasted for a tweet directed at her. On Sunday, Osaka was fined $15,000 and warned of possible deportation.
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