As one of the few incontrovertible GOATs we all know of (see also: Biles, Phelps), Serena Williams has compelled the entire game of tennis to rise to her degree and has blazed a path for other tennis players of colour to follow. Case in point: Naomi Osaka, one of Williams’s most prominent current competitions, has stated she”wouldn’t be here” if not for Serena and Venus Williams breaking down those barriers. Osaka’s dad, meanwhile, said he kickstarted her livelihood by following the example set by the Williams sisters. Flash forward to 2021, and 23-year-old Osaka is a celebrity in her own right with three Grand Slams beneath her belt. And while she chases Williams, and Williams chases that elusive, record-tying 24th Grand Slam, their head-to-head games have become can’t-miss entertainment.
In honor of the extraordinary athletes squaring off from the Australian Open semi-finals tomorrowtake a trip down memory lane with us and relive Osaka and Williams’s four previous games, from the infamous 2018 US Open Final (oh yeah, we’ll talk about this ) to their most recent exhibition matchup at Australia. Prepare for some great tennis and extreme competition from among the best athletes in the world.
Naomi Osaka Saving a Butterfly Midmatch During the Australian Open Is Pure Gold