WATCH: Naomi Osaka Smirks After Missing on Set Point Against Coco Gauff at Cincinnati Open 2021

Published 08/18/2021, 2:14 PM EDT
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – AUGUST 31: Cori Gauff of the United States and Naomi Osaka of Japan speak following their Women’s Singles third round match on day six of the 2019 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on August 31, 2019 in Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)


It was the second round of the Cincinnati Open 2021 and Naomi Osaka was taking on Coco Gauff. Both players have a similar gameplay and the match promised to be an exciting one. At the time of publishing, the match was poised at one set each. 

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One thing eye-catching occurence was when Naomi Osaka was losing a few points and she sarcastically smirked. The incident occurred when Coco Gauff hit the ball on the net cord and that caught Osaka off guard which made her react late and eventually had her lose the point.

Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 1, 2021 Coco Gauff of the U.S. celebrates during her second round match against Russia’s Elena Vesnina REUTERS/Paul Childs

Naomi Osaka finds her way back 

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It was unusual for the Japanese star who usually doesn’t reach in such a manner. Interestingly, she lost the opening set of the match and found a way back, gaining momentum to level to match at one set all. 

This is the first time these players have ended up going the distance. The previous two meetings were decided in straight sets, each player having won one match each. 

Reflecting on their seasons so far, Osaka began the season on a high, winning her fourth Grand Slam tournament at the Australian Open this season. After that, her form took a dip and she has not managed to win an event since then. 

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Tennis – Women’s Singles – Round 2 – Ariake Tennis Park – Tokyo, Japan – July 26, 2021. Naomi Osaka of Japan in action during her second round match against Viktorija Golubic of Switzerland REUTERS/Mike Segar

Just before the French Open, she decided to boycott post-match press conferences. Eventually, she withdrew herself before the second-round match. Later, she missed the Wimbledon Championships and lost in the initial rounds of the Tokyo Olympics. 

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On the other hand, Gauff registered her best result in a Grand Slam event by reaching the quarterfinal of the French Open. With each season passing by, the American teenager has been making consistent progress. It’ll be interesting to see who ends up winning this match. 

Watch this story: How Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams, and Others Travel

 

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Rohan Kollare

1063 articles

Rohan Kollare is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. Rohan has a post-graduate diploma in Sports Management and a trophy cabinet adorned with accolades won in district and state-level tennis competitions. He has previously worked in Content Operations for Disney’s Hotstar for over a year, covering tennis and Formula One.

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