Can Naomi Osaka Surpass Both Serena and Steffi?

AP/ Andy Brownbill, file

Can Naomi Osaka Surpass Both Serena and Steffi?

In tennis, people talk about Steffi or Serena as the greatest that ever played because of all that they accomplished. Accumulating 22 and 23 Grand Slam titles respectively is no small feat. However, what if I tell you that I think that feat could be easily surpassed by one Naomi Osaka? It is very possible that it could, and here’s why.

1. Competition

As Serena Williams’ time on the tour comes to an end, one gets the sense that there won’t be a serious contender to keep Noami from collecting a bunch of Grand Slams in a hurry. Sure, we have some promising youngsters, such as Iga Swiatek that look like they’re going to be world-beaters. Will they though? Naomi is starting to look really dominant in these past couple of slams, and I just don’t see a true rival testing her in the near future.

2. Longevity

This seems to be the name of the game nowadays. Players are playing well into their thirties due to improvements in nutrition and fitness. They know the exact number of calories and foods to provide optimal performance on the court. Then there’s the technology and advancements from a fitness perspective which allows these players to be in tip-top shape for years and years. This was never the case in the past. Usually, players were considered past their primes in the 30s. In today’s game, your 30s are your sweet spot.

3. Professionalism

Players have a whole team dedicated to their success nowadays, which includes psychologists, sponsors, agents, and structure. There are too many people lining themselves with the spoils of winning to get in the way of someone like Osaka’s ability to focus on the task at hand for years to come.

4. Money

The money is so big right now that there’s a huge motivating factor for players to focus on both longevity and professionalism. Naomi is already as professional and focused as they come.

In sum, the combination of these four factors points to the fact that she may not only be around a long time but also win a heck of a lot more tournaments while she’s with us.

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