April 18, 2021

Naomi Osaka: I still do not believe that I managed to achieve all this

Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka shared her impressions of exit to the final in Melbourne.

In Beijing, you said that you would not want your career to be measured in one tournament. Then they presented themselves in the finals of another major and were they proud of this achievement?

– To be honest, I feel myself in some other reality. However, I understand that I worked hard in the offseason. In every fight I gave all my strength. Therefore, for me, this result is a reward for the work done. I still do not believe that I have managed to achieve all this, so I will just move forward.

After the breakthrough in the Grand Slam tournament, many players find it difficult to repeat success. Why didn’t you have such a problem? 

Journalists who regularly attend my press conferences know perfectly well how much I love Slams. It is for the performance on the “majors” I work in training. When you are small, you look at them – the competition, where all play where the legendary matches take place. These are the most important tournaments, and there are only four of them in the season, so I always try to play them as well as possible.

A few years ago, you said that the value of experience is overestimated. In the sense that if you are good enough, experience is not the deciding factor. You are 21 years old and you are in the second “Slams” final in a row. Is it an experience or are you just so good?

– Perhaps this is all the same experience. I was in the third round. Stuck there for two years. But as soon as I managed to get out of there, I immediately found myself in the final. I think this result is due to experience and the emergence of self-reliance. Of course, it would be cool to consider myself very strong, but I reached the final on the teeth, winning three-set matches.

As a rule, you react with restraint to victories. Tell us what was in your head today at the end of the fight on the Challenge?

– Throughout the meeting, I felt that we were playing on an equal footing, but there were episodes in which the rival surpassed me. Therefore, I constantly encouraged myself. Every time the situation worsened, I screamed to keep a positive attitude. At the match point, I got excited when the line judge screamed “out”, because I really didn’t want to hit the second ball. That is why I was very happy when it turned out that I was hit.

Yesterday a scandal broke out when it became known that one of your sponsors in the campaign for the Japanese market portrayed you with fair skin. What do you think about that?

– At the moment I am focused on tennis. I reached the final of the Australian Open, and that’s what I’ll prioritize.

Nevertheless, are you glad that the campaign was stopped?

– I talked to the sponsors, apologized to me. Obviously, I have dark skin. I do not think that this situation arose intentionally. However, now I will coordinate all my images before publishing.

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