Serena is human and Osaka beats a lethargic field.
We are all very excited to have Serena back after a very long 13 months. It’s funny how we all kind of just expected her to come back and start off where she left off. Never mind the fact that she just gave birth a few months ago, and that during the last 13 months, tennis was not a priority.
However, Serena, being who she is, always seems unbeatable and almost super human. Many were surprised that she was so handily beat by Naomi Osaka in the first round of the Miami Open. Credit Naomi Osaka with not only coming off her first big win at Indian Wells, but also playing well against Serena. That being said, I’d wager to say that the Osaka that beat Serena last week loses to Serena 13 months ago 6-2, 6-3 – which was the Miami Open score line. Why do I say this?
Well, first of all, Serena at her 36-year-old best, is still the number one player in the world. Secondly, I think it’s a bit early to hype Osaka up so much. This past weekend, she was overwhelmed in Miami by Elina Svitolina 6-4, 6-2 after beating Serena in the previous round. Furthermore, most of the top women in the field have been looking a bit lethargic this past month.
Halep, whom Osaka beat in the Indian Wells Semis, seems to be regressing to her mental state of early 2017 again, all while looking ordinary in the last month. I hope she snaps out of it, because when she is playing well, she’s a close second to Serena. Anyway, Halep lost to Osaka in the Semis at Indian Wells and then lost early in Miami to a struggling Radwanska. The other top player she beat at Indian Wells was world number five Pliskova, who’s been beaten by C.C Bellis in the past month and this week needed a tie breaker in the third set to beat 32-year-old, and #62 ranked woman, Su-wei Hsieh. So, let’s not get too carried away with all this changing of the guard talk with Osaka. I predict Serena gets in match shape by Wimbledon, goes deep there, and then takes the US Open. Mark my words!