Former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka admitted she would like to build a strong rivalry with iga Swiatek. On Saturday, new world No. 1 Swiatek handed a 6-4 6-0 loss to Osaka in the Miami Masters final. It was the second meeting between the two.
Osaka beat Swiatek when they met the first time at the Toronto Masters in 2019. When talking about a potential Swiatek rivalry, Osaka mentioned Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who have played against each other 40 times.
“Yeah, when I hear someone say like rivalry it makes me remember when people said like me and Barty were in a rivalry, but we didn’t play that much, to be honest. I mean, I would love to be rivals with Iga, but I feel like we need to — like Federer and Nadal played so many different times, so we’d need to play at least five different times, I would say," Osaka said, per Essentially Sports.
“But yeah, for me, like, I always keep the same answer. Rivalries are what make the sport go around. People want to see the matchup in different countries or different surfaces. I think that’s the most exciting thing about tennis is like you play in different altitudes, different conditions.
So yeah. I don’t know if she really considers me a rival, but sure, that would be fun."
Osaka: Swiatek has improved a lot
A lot has changed since Osaka and Swiatek met for the first time in 2019. Swiatek is now a Grand Slam champion and the No.
1 player on the WTA rankings lost. "Iga was quite different from all the players that I've played previously, so it was a bit hard to adjust to what she was doing," Osaka admitted. "But I think hopefully if I play her next time, it will be a much better match.
"I'm not as disappointed as I normally would be. Normally, I would be crying in the locker room or something, but now I'm kind of chill. I feel like I know what I want to do better, and I just want to go back and start training again to hopefully win a tournament next time."
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