Osaka opens clay campaign by beating Hsieh in Stuttgart
STUTTGART, Germany (AP) — Top-ranked Naomi Osaka opened her clay-court season by beating Hsieh Su-wei of Taiwan 6-4, 6-3, on Thursday to reach the Porsche Grand Prix quarterfinals.
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — The new site for the Miami Open suddenly is missing a lot of star power.
Serena Williams withdrew Saturday, blaming a previously undisclosed left knee injury. Less...
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Facing the setting sun, Serena Williams tried to shield her eyes with her left hand as she hit a shot, lost the point and then waved in frustration at the bothersome...
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Three-time tournament champion Venus Williams won her opening match Thursday at the new site of the Miami Open by beating Dalila Jakupovic 7-5, 6-3.
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Victoria Azarenka won the first match on the stadium court at the new site of the Miami Open by beating Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 3-6, 6-4.
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) — It was a tough day for seeded players at the BNP Paribas Open on Tuesday, with Novak Djokovic and Naomi Osaka, the world's top-ranked players, ushered out in the...
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) — Naomi Osaka rolled past Danielle Collins 6-4, 6-2 in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open on Monday night, keeping the world's No. 1 player on track to defend her...
Djokovic, Osaka earn victories at Indian Wells
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) — Novak Djokovic and Naomi Osaka, both ranked No. 1 in the world, cruised to straight-set victories at the BNP Paribas Open on Saturday night.
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) — Playing just her seventh match of the year, Venus Williams rallied to beat Andrea Petkovic 6-4, 0-6, 6-3 in the first round of the BNP Paribas Open on...
No. 1-ranked Naomi Osaka has a new coach: Jermaine Jenkins.
Osaka's agent confirmed in an email to The Associated Press on Thursday that Jenkins has started working with the two-time major...
Media watchdog says Williams cartoon didn’t breach standards
SYDNEY (AP) — The Australian Press Council has ruled there was no breach of its standards of practice in a cartoon of tennis star Serena Williams which attracted global condemnation after being...
Kvitova, Halep advance at Dubai Championships
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Former champions Petra Kvitova and Simona Halep overcame windy conditions to reach the quarterfinals of the Dubai Championships on Wednesday.
No. 1 Naomi Osaka loses 1st match since splitting from coach
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Naomi Osaka lost her first match since moving up to No. 1 in the WTA rankings — and first since splitting from her coach.
Serena Williams back in top 10 after giving birth
LONDON (AP) — Serena Williams has returned to the top 10 in the tennis rankings for the first time since taking a break to have her first child.
Williams dropped as low as 491st upon her return to competition in March 2018 but is up to No. 10 after reaching two Grand Slam finals since, losing to Angelique Kerber at Wimbledon and Naomi Osaka at the U.S. Open.
Shiffrin, the new face of skiing, cites Osaka as inspiration
ARE, Sweden (AP) — During her inexorable rise to someday becoming the most successful Alpine skier in history, Mikaela Shiffrin has been shooting some admiring glances at another young female athlete excelling at her chosen sport.
And she, too, is emerging from the shadow of an all-time great.
No. 1 Osaka splits with coach 2 weeks after 2nd major title
Naomi Osaka surprisingly split from coach Sascha Bajin, a little more than two weeks after she won the Australian Open for a second consecutive Grand Slam title and moved to No. 1 in the WTA rankings.
"Hey everyone, I will no longer be working together with Sascha," Osaka posted on Twitter on Monday. "I thank him for his work and wish him all the best in the future."
Kvitova loses to Vekic in St Petersburg quarters
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Australian Open finalist Petra Kvitova struggled with her serve and was eliminated from the St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy after losing to eighth-seeded Donna Vekic 6-4, 6-1 in the quarterfinals on Friday.
The second-ranked Kvitova landed only 48 percent of her first serves, double-faulted six times, and was broken five times.
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Pliskova to lead Czechs in Fed Cup after Kvitova pulls out
PRAGUE (AP) — Karolina Pliskova will be the top player for defending Fed Cup champion Czech Republic in its first-round meeting with Romania, after Australian Open finalist Petra Kvitova pulled out.
Pliskova lost in the Australian Open semifinals this month to Naomi Osaka, who then defeated Kvitova in the final.
Svitolina in Fed Cup dispute with Ukraine tennis officials
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Australian Open quarterfinalist Elina Svitolina is in a dispute with the Ukrainian Tennis Federation and has withdrawn from her country's Fed Cup team.
Svitolina, who is ranked seventh in the world, says she can't play upcoming Fed Cup matches in Poland because she is injured. But the federation says she and Dayana Yastremska originally agreed to play but withdrew after their agent made unreasonable financial demands.
Weekend Sports In Brief
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Novak Djokovic has won his record seventh Australian Open championship and a third consecutive Grand Slam title by beating Rafael Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 6-3 in the final.
The No. 1-ranked Djokovic raised his major trophy total to 15, behind only Roger Federer's 20 and Nadal's 17. Djokovic improved to 7-0 in finals at Melbourne Park with a remarkably dominant and mistake-free performance against Nadal.
Australian Open champ Osaka is Asia’s 1st No. 1 in tennis
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka is the first player from Asia to top the men's or women's tennis rankings — and the youngest woman to make her debut at No. 1 in nine years.
"I feel like I'm literally just still learning," the 21-year-old Osaka said. "Everyone kind of adjusts to being No. 1 in a different way."
Novak, Naomi, other things we learned at Australian Open
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The way things went at the Australian Open didn't exactly teach the world that Novak Djokovic is the best there is in men's tennis right now. Certainly confirmed it, though.
And while those within the game knew all about Naomi Osaka, she made sure her talent is more obvious to more people.
Japanese fans celebrate Osaka’s rise to top of tennis world
TOKYO (AP) — Led by a congratulatory tweet from the prime minister, Japan reveled in Naomi Osaka's dramatic Australian Open win on Sunday.
Osaka beat Petra Kvitova 7-6 (2), 5-7, 6-4 on Saturday to claim a second consecutive Grand Slam singles title. The 21-year-old Osaka also became the first tennis player from Japan to reach No. 1 in the rankings.
Now No. 1, Osaka wins majors to strains of Jay Rock’s ‘Win’
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Like the 21-year-old she is, Naomi Osaka stepped into Rod Laver Arena for the Australian Open final with a cellphone in her right hand and music in both ears.
The headphones she wore carried the swirling brass, bouncing beat and boastful lyrics of Jay Rock's "Win," the same pre-match song Osaka listened to throughout the tournament — and at last year's U.S. Open, too.
"You might wanna keep score," the rapper says. "I win, win, win, win."
Naomi Osaka wins Australian Open for 2nd major, top ranking
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — So close to victory, Naomi Osaka suddenly was letting the Australian Open final slip away. Three championship points? Gone. A sizable lead? Soon all gone, too.
She was playing poorly. She yelled at herself. Slammed a ball. Tugged at her visor's pink brim. Trudged to the locker room between sets with a towel draped over her head.
Kvitova thrilled to be in Slam final, 2 years after attack
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Petra Kvitova really wanted to be the Australian Open champion. Of course she did.
That she lost the final at Melbourne Park to Naomi Osaka 7-6 (2), 5-7, 6-4 on Saturday night was "painful, for sure," to use Kvitova's words. It was not, however, what caused her eyes to well up during the trophy ceremony.
Merely standing there was enough to stir her emotions.
The Latest: Osaka takes 1st set in Aussie final vs Kvitova
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The Latest on Saturday at the Australian Open (all times local):
Naomi Osaka has won the first set 7-6 (2) in her Australian Open final against Petra Kvitova and is potentially one set from winning back-to-back major titles.
The U.S. Open champion had to save two break points in the fifth game and three in the seventh, when she came back from 0-40, to hold. From then on, she applied most of the pressure on Kvitova, a two-time Wimbledon winner.
Australian Open Glance: A look at the women’s final
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — A quick look at the Australian Open:
Kvitova-Osaka: Australian final from different perspectives
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Petra Kvitova has shed her tears. The tears, for a long time private, were in a very public arena this week.
A violent home invasion that caused serious knife wounds to her left hand was a punctuation point in her career, as she sees it. There's the before — two Wimbledon titles — and her "second career" — which so far is highlighted by her run to Saturday's Australian Open final.
Indian Wells tennis to feature all top 75 men and women
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) — The BNP Paribas Open will include all of the top 75 ranked men's and women's players in the world, including defending champions Juan Martin del Potro and Naomi Osaka.
The tournament runs March 4-17 at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in the Southern California desert.
Del Potro skipped the Australian Open while recovering from a knee injury, but he is on the entry list for Indian Wells.
AP Photos: Editor selections from the past week in Asia
Japan's Naomi Osaka smiles and Spain's Rafael Nadal sweats during the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne. Osaka is seeking her second Grand Slam title in the women's singles final on Saturday, while Nadal will try to earn his second Australian Open title and his 18th Slam trophy in Sunday's men's final.
Nissin drops Osaka ad after complaints, star focused on game
TOKYO (AP) — Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka says she hopes her sponsors will consult with her about how they portray her, but her focus is on her game as she heads into the final at the Australian Open.
Osaka was asked about criticism over one of her main sponsors, Nissin Foods Holdings, after they took down an online ad campaign that depicted her with pale skin after it was criticized as insensitive. Critics said the depiction does not reflect Osaka's biracial background
Osaka vs. Kvitova for Australian Open title, No. 1 ranking
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Naomi Osaka never made it past the fourth round at any of the first 10 Grand Slam tournaments of her career. Now, still just 21, she's suddenly on the verge of a second consecutive major championship.
Australian Open Glance: A look at semifinals on Day 11
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — A quick look at the Australian Open:
Australian Open Glance: A look at quarterfinals on Day 10
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — A quick look at the Australian Open:
Tennis trailblazer Li Na sees some similarities with Osaka
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Li Na saw much of herself in a young player on the women's tour early last year.
The two-time Grand Slam champion didn't hesitate to identify Japan's Naomi Osaka as the player with a bright future.
So Li, set to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in July along with fellow former Australian Open champions Mary Pierce and Yevgeny Kafelnikov, was not surprised when Osaka won the 2018 U.S. Open.
Trip to Haiti makes Naomi Osaka appreciate her good life
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Naomi Osaka said she's just returned from Haiti where some people struggle to get clean drinking water. This makes her appreciate even more getting into the Australian Open quarterfinals — and her own good life.
Haiti is her father's birthplace — her mother Tamaki is Japanese. It's also the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.
Racket-smashing, tumbling Osaka advances at Australian Open
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Naomi Osaka had the umpire warning her for spiking her racket in the first set, and checking on her welfare when she tumbled near the baseline in the next.
The U.S. Open champion had a topsy-turvy third-round at the Australian Open on Saturday, getting within two games of elimination before finding her range against a tricky Hsieh Su-wei and winning 5-7, 6-4, 6-1.
US Open champion Osaka eases into 2nd round in Australia
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The only bug in the system was of the genuine flying variety when Naomi Osaka secured her first win at a major as a Grand Slam champion.
The U.S. Open champion beat Magda Linette 6-4, 6-2 to end play at Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday at the Australian Open. The only delay in the 58-minute match came just before Osaka was serving for the match, when a ballboy tried to catch a bug that was fluttering on the court.
Tsurenko upsets second-seeded Osaka to reach Brisbane final
BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — She's ranked No. 5 in the world, will enter the season-opening major as a reigning Grand Slam champion, and is trying not to sulk.
A lot has happened for Naomi Osaka since she beat Serena Williams in the U.S. Open final last September, and she's still coming to terms with it. Mostly, it's the expectations.
She has reached the semifinals or better at four of her last five tournaments but hasn't added another title.
Coach’s words inspire Osaka; Nishikori also into semifinals
BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Naomi Osaka called in her coach for advice on how to swing momentum after losing the first set to Anastasija Sevastova, and it did the trick.
The U.S. Open champion responded by conceding only five points in the next set on her way to a 3-6, 6-0, 6-4 win Thursday that secured her spot in the Brisbane International semifinals.
Osaka’s coach, Bajin, wins 1st WTA Coach of the Year award
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Sascha Bajin has been chosen as the first winner of the WTA Coach of the Year award after helping Naomi Osaka collect the U.S. Open title.
The women's tennis tour announced its annual honors Monday.
The first season as a team for Bajin and Osaka produced her first WTA title at Indian Wells, then her first Grand Slam title in New York, where she beat Serena Williams in the final. Bajin used to work with Williams.
Naomi Osaka headed for big money with Japan, global appeal
TOKYO (AP) — Naomi Osaka used a powerful forehand and a matching serve to win the U.S. Open against Serena Williams. Off the court — on the marketing front — experts say she could have the same potential as Williams, and maybe more.
"It's very, very rare to find a Japanese-born female athlete who appeals to an international audience," said Bob Dorfman, a sports marketing expert and creative director at Baker Street Advertising in San Francisco, California.