Former British tennis star Johanna Konta thinks Naomi Osaka can cause Ashleigh Barts problems. Barty, ranked at No. 1 in the world, and world No. 14 Osaka were drawn in the same quarter of the Australian Open draw. “Without stating the obvious, there is her [Barty’s] variety and ability to mix things up but what impresses me the most is her consistency – not just not missing but her level of focus and application every point,” Konta said on the Eurosport Cube, as quoted on Tennishead.
“She very rarely has dips, matches have ebbs and flows but her matches are so consistent and so level which asks her opponent to play at that high level which she has consistently which is very hard to do. “I do think Naomi Osaka can cause Ash Barty problems [though].
Ash is in her comfort zone a little more when she does have a bit more time, a bit more time to get around to that forehand and Naomi plays incredibly fast and incredibly quick. “I think that does present some challenges for Ash but I do think, overall, Ash is in better form so I would still pick Ash in that match-up.
But Naomi on a good day she is incredible”.
Osaka, Barty a win away from meeting
Osaka is set to clash Amanda Anisimova in the Australian Open third round, while Barty faces Canila Giorgi. Osaka faces next rising American star Anisimova, an opponent she has never faced before.
“I've never hit with her or practiced with her, so it will definitely be really new going into the match. It's really nice to see her around, because I heard of her story and on what happened to her, so it's really good, like she's pushing through it,” Osaka said of Anisimova. If both Osaka and Barty win, they will meet in the round-of-16.