World no. 1 Naomi Osaka heads to training week at Rafa Nadal Academy before the start of the Madrid Masters. The Japanese pulled out of the Stuttgart Open semifinals match last week due to an abdominal injury. But Naomi Osaka is ready to come back on the red surface, practicing at Rafa Nadal Academy in Mallorca.
Naomi Osaka has chosen one of the best places to train and get ready for the red dirt season starting from the Madrid Masters next week. The clay court is the least preferred surface for the 21-year-old Japanese. However, Naomi Osaka would be hoping for having a good run at the red clay.
Osaka had a decent run at the Stuttgart Open last week. But an abs injury in the semifinal forced her to pull out of the tournament. Naomi Osaka accepted that she was disappointed after being injured but on the other hand she was also ‘happy’ that the injury did not happen close to the Roland Garros. She was also confident about being fit for the French Open 2019.
“Even though it is bad that I got injured here, I am happy that it happened at the beginning of the clay season, and not in Rome where it is really close to the French Open. It’s an ab strain, something that I’ve had before,” said Naomi Osaka.
The 2018 US Open champion did not go back to the USA to recover from injury. Instead, she is working on her comeback on the tennis court and she chose the home of ‘king of clay’, Rafael Nadal to get back in form, as both prepare for the Madrid Open. Rafa Nadal Academy has been passing on the Nadal’s vision onto the next generation players and Osaka hopes to get the best out of it.
Rafa Nadal Academy welcomed the no. 1 ranked tennis player on the WTA leaderboards with a Tweet. It said, ” Welcome to Rafa Nadal Academy, Naomi Osaka. The no. 1 ranked WTA player is training with us this week. It is an honor for us to have you here.”
— Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar (@rnadalacademy) April 30, 2019
However, it is still unsure whether Naomi Osaka would participate in Madrid or not. Osaka has to defend only 200 points in Madrid, Rome and French Open. Naomi Osaka is still holding the no. 1 rank with Petra Kvitova closing the gap after conquering the Stuttgart Open.