Osaka Powers Through To Aus Open Third Round

Getty Images

 

Naomi Osaka showed her class and power against Tamara Zidansek as she reached the Australian Open third round.

US Open champion and fourth seed Osaka was too good in her 6-2 6-4 victory over Zidansek in humid conditions at Melbourne Park on Thursday.

Osaka – aiming to become the first woman to win successive grand slams since Serena Williams claimed the 2014 US Open followed by the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon in 2015 – will face Hsieh Su-wei in the next round.

Japanese star Osaka stormed out of the blocks after a brief rain shower delayed the start of the match as the Margaret Court Arena roof was closed.

 

Osaka, who has never reached the quarter-finals in Melbourne, earned three break-point opportunities in the opening game and converted the third with a cheeky drop-shot winner, much to the delight of the pro-Osaka crowd.

A couple of loose errors saw Osaka broken back, but the crowd favourite reclaimed the break immediately after sensationally guessing the direction of Zidansek's smash before consolidating for a 4-2 lead.

Another break in the seventh game capped a fine first set for Osaka, one of eight winners in an impressive 28-minute opener against the Slovenian.

Zidansek was not overawed, however, as she continued to go toe-to-toe with the Japanese star, breaking at 30-40 for a 4-2 lead.

But just as Zidansek seemed to have the momentum, Osaka regained her composure and the break to move past the second round.

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN 
Osaka [4] bt Zidansek 6-2 6-4

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS 
Osaka - 17/23
Zidansek - 13/26

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS 
​Osaka - 6/1
Zidansek - 2/2

BREAK POINTS WON 
​Osaka - 5/13
Zidansek - 2/5

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE 
​Osaka - 66
Zidansek - 64

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE 
​Osaka - 79/47
Zidansek - 45/52

TOTAL POINTS 
​Osaka - 65
Zidansek - 44