Naomi Osaka neutralised any fears about a pending slump as the four-time Grand Slam champion defeated Ajla Tomljanovic 7-6(3), 6-4 on Friday for a third-round spot at the Miami Masters and a 22nd straight win.
World No. 2 Osaka, a shy and retiring type who has expressed some hesitation at committing full-time, to the WTA in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, showed no hesitation in getting the job done during her opening match,
The recent Australian Open champion pounded 36 winners including 13 aces to advance in 98 minutes.
“This is my first match since Australia, so I just really wanted to play well,” Osaka said. “I’m at home here, because I grew up (in Florida).
“I served really well when I needed to, Unfortunately I got broken a couple of times, but when it really, really mattered, I was able to serve well.
“I’m happy with that.”
Osaka came from a break down in the opening set as she found her feet after a month away from competition.
Main photo:- 2021 Australian Open winner Naomi Osaka off to a flying start in Miami – by Tennis Australia/ FIONA HAMILTON