Tennis world erupts over Naomi Osaka act after Miami Open final

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Naomi Osaka, pictured here after losing the Miami Open final against Iga Swiatek.
Naomi Osaka was all class after losing the Miami Open final against Iga Swiatek. Image: WTA/Getty

Naomi Osaka has won over the tennis world with her classy and humble response after being demolished in the Miami Open final by Iga Swiatek.

Swiatek became the first woman in history to win the first three WTA 1000 titles in a calendar year, brushing Osaka aside 6-4 6-0 in Saturday's final.

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The 20-year-old will now take the World No.1 ranking vacated by Ash Barty's retirement after doing the 'Sunshine Double' by winning back-to-back titles at Indian Wells and Miami.

For Osaka, the runner-up performance marked a return to her brilliant best and the first time she'd made a final since the 2021 Australian Open some 14 months ago.

The Japanese star endured a difficult year after winning her fourth grand slam title in February of 2021, taking a break from the game to focus on her mental health.

On Saturday, the 24-year-old showed that her efforts to improve her mental health have done wonders for her on-court performance.

Osaka was classy and humble in her runner-up speech, heaping praise on Swiatek and thanking those who have stood by her.

"I want to dedicate this one to all the people that support me and my fans," she said.

Naomi Osaka, pictured here speaking to the crowd after losing to Iga Swiatek in the Miami Open final.
Naomi Osaka speaks to the crowd after losing to Iga Swiatek in the Miami Open final. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

"I know I haven't been in this position for a little minute.

"I know this isn't the outcome that you guys wanted but I am having a lot of fun out here so I hope that I can keep working hard and get more opportunities to be in a situation like this again.

"I want to congratulate Iga. Just watching your journey is really incredible and I hope you continue having fun.

"You're a really incredible, amazing person and I hope you keep going forward."

Fans were grateful to see Osaka happy and smiling again and praised her for the classy speech.

Iga Swiatek makes tennis history with Miami title

Swiatek didn't drop a set en route to the Miami title and has now won 17 consecutive matches dating back to her championship run at the Qatar Open in February.

The 20-year-old is just the fourth woman to win the Indian Wells and Miami tournaments back-to-back, a feat known as the 'Sunshine Double'.

Her titles in Qatar, Indian Wells and Miami make her the first woman ever to win the first three WTA 1000 events in a calendar year.

"These weeks were so intense I didn't really know if I would able to keep up with the streak that I have," said Swiatek.

Naomi Osaka and Iga Swiatek, pictured here posing with their trophies after the Miami Open final.
Naomi Osaka and Iga Swiatek pose with their trophies after the Miami Open final. (Photo by Eva Marie Uzcategui Trinkl/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

"It's amazing for me that I could show mental toughness because my whole life I thought I could do more and sometimes I was losing and I didn't even know why.

"This season I feel like everything clicked so it's great and I am really happy."

The Polish star is the first women to complete the 'Sunshine Double' since Victoria Azarenka in 2016.

Kim Clijsters (2005) and Steffi Graf (1994, 1996) are the only other women to accomplish the rare feat.

with agencies

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