Naomi Osaka Honors NBA Legend Kobe Bryant by Wearing Lakers Jersey at Australian Open 2021

Published 02/19/2021, 5:00 AM EST
Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 16, 2021 Japan’s Naomi Osaka in action during her quarter final match against Taiwan’s Su-Wei Hsieh REUTERS/Kelly Defina


It has been over a year since the tragic death of Basketball legend Kobe Bryant. He was an inspiration to many athletes, one of whom is Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka. The World No. 3 was very sad about his death, which is why she has been honoring him since that day.

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At the 2020 US Open, Naomi wore a Los Angeles Lakers jersey after every match. However, it wasn’t enough for Osaka to wear the jersey at the US Open. This is why she wore it again at the 2021 Australian Open after she beat Serena Williams. Here are some images.

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Clearly, Osaka loved watching Kobe Bryant and misses him every day. He inspired her to be the best in her sport and the Japanese star has achieved that through her three Grand Slam wins. Now, she is looking to win another to add to her collection.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, Japan’s Naomi Osaka after winning her semi-final match. It was against Serena Williams of the U.S. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

Naomi Osaka Seeking Another Major

At the 2021 Australian Open, Naomi Osaka has been playing amazingly well. Nearly all of her matches were won in straight sets, and many are surely favoring her to win the title in Melbourne this year.

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In the final, the Japanese star will be facing Jennifer Brady. The American has seen a meteoric rise on the WTA Tour over the last 12 months and in addition to that, she has caused a lot of problems for Osaka in the past, pushing her to a three-set thriller at the 2020 US Open.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, Japan’s Naomi Osaka in action during her semi-final match against Serena Williams of the U.S. REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Clearly, Naomi’s quest for a fourth Grand Slam title isn’t going to be easy. However, she is more motivated than ever to win the title. She wants to regain the No. 1 spot and a win tomorrow will get her closer to that goal. Good luck, Osaka!

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Rishi Karthikeyan

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