Home » Osaka proud after almost pulling off greatest upset of Swiatek

Osaka proud after almost pulling off greatest upset of Swiatek

After losing a tight opening set, Osaka swept through 10 of the next 12 games, building a 4-1 final-set lead and holding a point for 5-1.

Her serve firing, she struck eight aces among 54 total winners. Swiatek, a player who thrives when dictating rallies, was consistently pushed back by the depth and pace of Osaka’s drives.

Osaka led 2-5, 0-30, and held a match point on serve at 5-3. But Swiatek dug in, completing a remarkable comeback to win 7-6(1) 1-6 7-5.

“I was kind of playing point by point. I had to frequently look at the scoreboard to know what the score was. (But) I was aware of the score when I was serving for it,” admitted Osaka, who finished with 16 more winners than unforced errors.

“Honestly, it’s not the worst. Like, I felt worse, for sure. I cried when I got off the court, but then I kind of realise I was watching Iga win this tournament last year, and I was pregnant. It was just my dream to be able to play her.

“I feel like I played her on her better surface. I’m a hard-court kid, so I would love to play her on my surface and see what happens.”

Swiatek’s muted reaction to winning betrayed more relief than joy.

She was aware she had dodged a bullet, but was nonetheless pleased to have her rival back in the sport and pushing her to the limits on the biggest stages.