“Honor I don’t Take Lightly”: Naomi Osaka Aims to Empower Young Women Around the World

Published 03/08/2021, 10:33 AM CST
Tennis – Australian Open – Women’s Singles Final – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 20, 2021 Japan’s Naomi Osaka gives an interview as she celebrates with the trophy after winning her final match against Jennifer Brady of the U.S. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

She is one of the biggest contemporary role models in sports and the official Twitter handle for the Summer Olympics has pulled out snatches of an empowering message from Japanese tennis superstar Naomi Osaka to inspire aspiring achievers on International Women’s Day.


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The post is aptly captioned, “@naomiosaka on the importance of sports and strong female role models in the fight of gender equality”.

The Japanese World Number 2, who has worked her way to the top echelons of women’s tennis on merit, sheer hard work and belief, is considered an inspiration for aspiring women achievers.


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Naomi Osaka is considered as a role model by aspiring women achievers

She clinched her second Australian Open title this year, becoming the first woman since former Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova to win four Grand Slam championships.

Osaka’s message says she considers it an honor and a privilege to be seen by many as a role model.

She said growing up, she watched some of her idols on television and to now be considered as someone that people look up to for inspiration is a feeling that brings her a lot of joy.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 18, 2021 Japan’s Naomi Osaka with Serena Williams of the U.S. after winning their semi final match REUTERS/Kelly Defina

“I watched my idols from afar, either in the stands or on TV,” the Japanese said.

Naomi Osaka says it’s an honor to know that young girls look up to her for inspiration

Also the reigning US Open champion, Osaka said she is mindful of how she is seen globally and being a role model is a mantle that she takes very seriously.

“…now knowing that a young girl may look up to me is an honor and one I don’t take lightly,” the World Number 2 said.

One of her idols, 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, is no less of a role model herself, ably straddling the worlds of a champion tennis player, a doting mother and a successful entrepreneur.


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The 39-year-old Serena came into this year’s Australian Open in the hope of ending her three-year wait to winning a 24th Grand Slam title, which would put her on level with the legendary Margaret Court’s career haul.


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However, her campaign was ended by Osaka in the semifinals.


Priyabrata Chowdhury

995 articles

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.