Naomi Osaka couldn't help but pay a special compliment to Serena Williams in her post match speech ahead of a potential semi-final showdown against the American at the Australian Open.
World No.3 Osaka stormed past Hsieh Su-wei in straight sets 6-2, 6-2 to set up a blockbuster match between either Simona Halep or Williams.
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Osaka continued her incredibly dominant form against her 35-year-old opponent who was competing in her first Grand Slam quarter-final match.
But Osaka overpowered Hsieh with her powerful ground strokes to set up a mouth-watering semi-final clash.
However, it was Osaka's subtle show of admiration for Williams during her post-match interview that had fans in a frenzy.
Osaka admitted whether she is playing Williams or not, she tunes in for her matches.
"Well I know my next opponent is Serena or Halep, and I always watch Serena's matches anyways," she said.
"But normally I never look at my draw, but everyone has told me about my draw here...it's going to be really fun."
Fans lose it over Osaka compliment for Serena
Osaka's admission she watches all of Williams' matches had fans praising the World No.3.
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) February 16, 2021
Naomi is so sweet that's cute😀
— OrvilleLloydDouglas🇨🇦🏳️🌈 (@OrvilleLloyd) February 16, 2021
She is too sweet ☺️🎾
— Heinekenvirus (@G_Ale_XII) February 16, 2021
Please I need Serena to get this win tonight so we can get the Osaka semi final! 🤞🏽#AO2021
— Cam (@iPleadTha6) February 16, 2021
— M O M O ... (@momo3107) February 16, 2021
The victorious 23-year-old also paid tribute to her opponent.
"I'm really happy with how I played today, too," Osaka said after the match.
"Every time I play her it's such a battle. Even though the score was like this it was actually really another battle for me.
There is no surprise Osaka paid Williams such a compliment considering her 23-Grand Slam titles, which Osaka would have grown up watching.
Osaka also won her very first Grand Slam title at the US Open against Williams.
Osaka will be looking to take her winning streak to 19 matches in the semi-final.
The World No.3 holds a 2-2 career record against Williams and a losing 1-4 record against Halep.
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