'What on earth': Tennis world in disbelief over Naomi Osaka drama

Naomi Osaka, pictured here after crashing out of the Madrid Open at the hands of Sara Sorribes Tormo.
Naomi Osaka crashed out of the Madrid Open at the hands of Sara Sorribes Tormo. Image: Getty

Naomi Osaka has made an unwanted start to her clay-court campaign at the Madrid Open, crashing out in the second round on Sunday at the hands of Sara Sorribes Tormo.

The former World No.1 was stunned by Sorribes Tormo, who beat the four-time major champion 6-3 6-1 in staggering scenes.

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Osaka struggled for rhythm and was dominated by her Spanish opponent, who mixed her game up to devastating effect to notch up her second career victory over the Japanese star.

The Madrid Open was Osaka's first tournament on clay since the 2021 French Open, where she withdrew after a first round victory for mental health reasons.

Osaka, who had posted an underwhelming 20-15 record on the surface prior to this week, looked uncomfortable throughout and appeared to struggle with a leg injury during a disappointing second set display.

Speaking in her post-match press conference, Osaka said she felt pain in her achilles after her first-round victory over Anastasia Potapova.

Sara Sorribes Tormo, pictured here after beating Naomi Osaka at the Madrid Open.
Sara Sorribes Tormo was in disbelief after beating Naomi Osaka at the Madrid Open. (Photo by Robert Prange/Getty Images)

She said she tried to rest it on her day off but the pain returned during her warm-up.

“Honestly, I have had it before, like maybe two years ago I think after Miami or something," she said.

"But I can't imagine that it will be a huge problem unless something significant happens, but I think for right now, just learning how to move forward with everything.”

Tennis fans and commentators were left in disbelief over the huge upset.

Big names crash out of Madrid Open

The 24-year-old wasn't the only high-profile player on the receiving end of a shock loss during a day of drama in the Spanish capital, as several of the competition's top seeds failed to secure places in the last 16.

Fourth seed Maria Sakkari was the highest-ranked player in action, and although the World No.5 won the first set against Daria Kasatkina, the Greek eventually fell to a 3-6 6-3 6-1 loss.

Local favourite Garbine Muguruza also fell to a resounding loss of her own as Anhelina Kalinina raced to a 6-3 6-0 victory over the seventh seed.

Unseeded Canadian Bianca Andreescu outclassed Australian Open finalist Danielle Collins 6-1 6-1 in just over an hour.

"I did not expect for it to go like that at all but I stuck to my game plan and it worked, so I'm very happy," said Andreescu, who returned to action in Stuttgart only last month following a long-term injury.

Emma Raducanu, pictured here celebrating her win over Marta Kostyuk at the Madrid Open.
Emma Raducanu celebrates her win over Marta Kostyuk at the Madrid Open. (Photo By Oscar J. Barroso/Europa Press via Getty Images)

And 2021 US Open runner-up Leylah Fernandez went down 6-4 6-4 to Jil Teichmann.

However Emma Raducanu showed the sort of form that won her the US Open title, beating Ukraine's Marta Kostyuk.

Having managed back-to-back victories at an event just once in the seven months following her New York triumph, Raducanu has now done it twice in as many weeks.

The 19-year-old won 11 of the last 12 games to beat Tereza Martincova in the opening round, and on Sunday she raced to a 6-2 6-1 victory against fellow teenager Kostyuk.

Speaking on court, Raducanu said: "I'm definitely very happy with my performance today.

"Marta is a great opponent, we played several times in the juniors and then once last year.

"I knew it was always going to be a really tough battle so I went out there trying to be really aggressive and it definitely paid off."

with agencies

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