Osaka wins second US Open title after stunning turnaround against Azarenka

Osaka wins second US Open title after stunning turnaround against Azarenka


Naomi Osaka won the US Open for the second time in three years after beating Victoria Azarenka in three sets ©Getty Images

Naomi Osaka won her second US Open title after coming from a set and a break down to overhaul unseeded Victoria Azarenka in New York.

The victory at Flushing Meadows is Osaka's third Grand Slam, to add to the 2018 US Open and 2019 Australian Open.

Azarenka, a former world number one who came into the tournament in New York unseeded got off to a flying start against the fourth seed taking the first set 6-1.

The Belarusian's domination of the contest continued early in the second set as she got an early break to lead 2-0.

Osaka then started her fightback and won six of the next seven games to take the second set 6-3.

The Japanese player's momentum continued into the decider and after she broke early in the set she never relinquished her advantage.

Osaka served out the match, taking a second championship point to win the contest 1-6 6-3 6-3, and claim the US Open crown for the second time in three years.


Naomi Osaka (left) and Victoria Azarenka tap rackets following a memorable final won by the Japanese player in three sets ©Getty Images

During her on-court interview after the match Osaka said: "It was a tough match for me, but it was amazing to have the opportunity to play you (Azarenka) here.

"Thank you to my team for believing in me and to the organisers for providing a safe environment."

Osaka was asked during the interview what the turning point in the match was and she said: "I thought it would be embarrassing to lose it in less than an hour so I decided I would have to change my attitude."

During her on-court interview Azarenka said it had been a "fun" tournament and added: "Congratulations to Naomi - it has been an incredible two weeks for you, I am very happy for you.

"I want to thank the United States Tennis Association and everyone who made this tournament happen.

"I want to thank my team for sticking with me and believing in me."

The tournament was played behind closed doors owing to the coronavirus pandemic, with organisers creating a "bubble" around the Flushing Meadows site in New York.

By Neil Shefferd