‘Never Been More Excited for a Year to be Over’: Naomi Osaka Bids Farewell to Rough Year

Published 01/01/2022, 2:30 AM EST
Aug 18, 2021; Mason, OH, USA; Naomi Osaka (JPN) reacts after returning a shot against Cori Gauff (USA) during the Western and Southern Open tennis tournament at Lindner Family Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports


To say that 2021 was a year of ups and downs for Naomi Osaka would be an understatement. Not only did she win the Australian Open in 2021, but she also became only the third player to win her first four Grand Slam finals. In fact, this feat helped her join the elite company of Roger Federer and Monica Seles.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

On the other hand, Osaka also struggled with her mental health this year. In fact, she was at the center of one of the biggest discussions in the sport regarding the importance of mental health. Even though many athletes supported her move to exit the tour for a while to recoup, the general consensus remained mixed.

Naomi Osaka can not wait for 2022

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

It was not just the French Open where Naomi Osaka pulled out citing mental health reasons. In fact, the 24-year-old also refrained from playing at the Wimbledon championship for the same reasons.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 03. Naomi Osaka of Japan looks dejected during her match against Leylah Fernandez of Canada in the third round of the women’s singles at the US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 03, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by TPN/Getty Images)

Furthermore, at the US Open, where she was the reigning champion, Osaka lost her composure in the third round. In fact, she received code violations for throwing the ball into the stands, and also for throwing her racket.

The major cause for concern came when she revealed in the post-match conference that winning no longer made her happy. Thus, Osaka was thrown under the spotlight, with her stance on mental health considered polarizing.

Nevertheless, the Japanese star has struggled with media obligations, her own mental health, and a less-than-favorable record of tournaments this year.

 

Thus, it was all too understandable as Osaka tweeted how excited she was for this year to finally be over.

DIVE DEEPER

WATCH: Naomi Osaka, Nick Kyrgios, and Other Tennis Stars Sweating it Out Ahead of Australian Open 2022

about 1 month ago

Osaka has been ready for the new season for a while

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Tennis Training – Ariake Tennis Park, Tokyo, Japan – July 19, 2021 Naomi Osaka of Japan during training REUTERS/Hannah Mckay

Clearly, Naomi Osaka is looking to make up for a missed half-year as she heads into 2022. Not only will she be looking to defend her reign at the Australian Open in January, but she will also be back to her regular form.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

 

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The Japanese-American tennis star has been preparing for the new season ahead of time. Thus, it then becomes clear that is ready to face the grueling tour once again and is feeling up to the task physically as well as emotionally and mentally.

DIVE DEEPER: ‘2021 Was Another Tough Year’: Roger Federer Looks Forward to 2022 in New Year Message

Enjoyed reading this article? Download our exclusive app to get 24x7 coverage, latest memes and social media banter. Click here to download.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Samarveer Singh

233 articles

Samarveer Singh is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. Holding a degree in English Literature and a diploma in Fitness Sciences and Training, Samarveer is obsessed with tennis and basketball. He is also an automotive writer at HotCars.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT