From diverse background, Naomi Osaka marches into forefront at U.S. Open

From diverse background, Naomi Osaka marches into forefront at U.S. Open

From diverse background, Naomi Osaka marches into forefront at U.S. Open

Keys, the 2017 runner-up, leads Osaka 3-0 in career meetings including the third round at the US Open in 2016 when she battled back from 1-5 in the final set to triumph.

The 29-year-old has also reached the quarter-finals of the three other Slams including Wimbledon this year, the first Japanese man to do so in 23 years.

She purported to be "freaking out inside", even if it certainly never showed.

Said an emotional Osaka after her hard-fought victory, "I wouldn't forgive myself if I managed to lose that". Tsurenko had 31 unforced errors to Osaka's 11, and Osaka finished with 12 winners.

He had a letdown at the very end, too, rallying from 4-1 down to 4-all, before Nishikori grabbed the last two games.

Osaka's next opponent will likely be her toughest yet, as she's set to face Madison Keys in the semifinals.

"I don't really feel pressure from them", Osaka said.

Nishikori allowed his advantage to slip, missing a break point that would have given him a 5-1 lead and then being pegged back to 4-4.

"Unfortunately during this tournament I had many issues with my health, and today was not my day obviously". "Especially after coming from injury", he said, "I think I'm enjoying this challenge". "I was not feeling well", Tsurenko told reporters.

She won 59 points to just 28 for the unseeded Ukrainian, who knocked off No. 2 seed Caroline Wozniacki in the second round.

Osaka had consecutive 50-minute matches earlier in the tournament, including a 6-0, 6-0 thrashing of Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the third round.

The two are power hitters of the same cloth but different countries and it was Osaka who prevailed giving Sabalenka a taste of her own medicine first.

It was another hot afternoon Wednesday, with temperatures in the high-80s (30s Celsius) but feeling some 10 degrees hotter with the humidity.

To win a title or even make a final in NY, where she and her sister Mari grew up learning tennis in a Haitian household with her father's parents and eating her mother's Japanese food, would speak to every part of Osaka's multicultural experience.

Tsurenko didn't appear bothered by the conditions, but whether it was her health or just first-time jitters, she was off from the minute she stepped onto Arthur Ashe Stadium.

"I hate matches like this", Tsurenko said.

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