The U.S Open Women’s third round had plenty of action with most of the favorites advancing which sets up a great round of 16.
U.S Open Women’s Best Third Round Match
In terms of quality, the match between No. 1 ranked Naomi Osaka and Coco Gauff did not live up to the pre-match hype. It was a very straight forward win for Osaka won in dominant fashion, 6-3 6-0. It was a learning experience for Gauff who showed her potential in her previous match. In that instance, the 15-year-old showed mental toughness beyond her years in her win over Tamea Babos.
Osaka Was Too Much for Gauff
In this match, the 21-year-old defending U.S Open Women’s champion Osaka was simply too much for her. Osaka has two Grand Slam’s under her belt after winning the Australian Open in January. This experience is still new for her as this is her first time coming into a major as defending champion. As usual, she took this latest win in stride:
“I’m just going with the flow at this rate. I’ve never defended a Grand Slam before. We out here, you know. We’re just having fun.” Naomi Osaka- defending U.S Open Women’s champion
The Post Match Exchange Between Osaka and Gauff Makes Headlines
Gauff who came into the match ranked No. 140 in the world started off well but in the end, she made 24 unforced errors which is hard for any player to overcome. This match will be remembered more for what happened afterwards between the two young stars.
In a show of true sportsmanship, Osaka persuaded Gauff to join her for the on-court-post match interview. It was something that she obviously didn’t have to do but it shows you how aware she is of her surroundings. Her opponent Gauff is only 15 years old and she deserves her moment in the spotlight. After the run she made at Wimbledon where she reached the 4th round, she has been hailed as a rising star in American tennis.
The two shared this exchange:
It’s not clear what the future holds for Coco Gauff as she is only 15 but it does appear she has what it takes to keep improving as she continues to mature. As for Naomi Osaka, if she can continue to play at an elite level, it looks like women’s tennis is in great hands.
Naomi Osaka Is Looking to Cement Her Place
She explained that the reason that she invited Gauff to share the post match interview with her is because that’s who the crowd came to see. Think about the level of self awareness to understand that even though you are the number 1 ranked player, it doesn’t mean that you always need to be in the spotlight. It shows the level of self confidence that Osaka has. She didn’t think twice about sharing the spotlight with a rival.
She mentioned that she has been watching Gauff put in the work with her father on the practice courts. Make no mistake about it, tennis fans around the world, especially in the U.S will be more willing to back Naomi Osaka after this show of humility and sportsmanship towards a young up and coming American tennis star. In the next round Osaka will face No. 13 Belinda Bencic of Switzerland in the next round.