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naomi osaka

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Naomi Osaka was victorious yesterday and won her third Grand Slam title at the 2020 U.S Open. According to CNN, Osaka beat her opponent Victoria Azarenka in matches with 1-6, 6-3 and 6-3. After winning the match, she dropped to the ground of the Arthur Ashe Stadium.

“I always see everyone collapse after match point,” she said when getting her trophy. “I always think you might injure yourself so I wanted to do it safely.”

On Twitter, the 22-year-old, who is of Japanese of Haitian descent, gave thanks to her ancestors.

“I would like to thank my ancestors because everytime I remember their blood runs through my veins I am reminded that I cannot lose,” she wrote on Twitter.

After the win, Osaka spoke about how she was able to come back from being down and going for the win.

“For me I just thought it would be very embarrassing to lose this in under an hour and I just have to try as hard as I can and stop having a really bad attitude,” she said. “I feel like two years ago I maybe would have folded being down a set and a break. But I think all the matches that I played in between that time shaped me and made me or forced me to mature more. Especially all the matches that I’ve played here were very tough. So, yeah, I think definitely I’m more of a complete player now.”
She told ESPN that she was focused on achieving a goal.
“I just start thinking point by point,” she said. “I wasn’t really thinking about winning after a certain while. I just thought about, ‘I came here with a goal, I’m playing in the final, a lot of people want to be in this final, so I can’t lose 6-1, 6-0.’”

Osaka also made headlines due to the customized masks she wore during her six matches. During each game, she wore a mask with the name of a Black victim across the front. She wore victims’ names including Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain, George Floyd, Eric Garner and Ahmaud Arbery. While playing her winning match, her mask bore the name of Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old boy who was shot by police in Cleveland, Ohio in 2014.

“I feel like the point is to make people start talking,” Osaka said about making a statement with the masks.

 

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