Naomi Osaka is ranked No.2 behind Australian Ash Barty, but the Japanese ace is without doubt the world’s best female tennis player.
At 23, the 180cm Osaka is a powerhouse as she showed during the Australian Open.
Osaka dropped only one set – to dual Grand Slam titleholder Garbine Muguruza in a fourth-round victory in which she saved two match points – on her way to her second title win at Melbourne Park.
One can only imagine what was going through Serena Williams’ mind as the athletic Osaka forced the veteran American wide and passed her with powerful groundstrokes in their semi-final.
To keen observers, Osaka is a younger, stronger version of the 23-time Grand Slam champion Williams – who the Japanese player idolised as she was growing up…