On Thursday in Melbourne, Serena Williams, 39, was defeated by Naomi Osaka, 23, a two-time grand slam champion at the Australian Open semifinals. This loss signifies that Serena would not be able to achieve the Australian Margaret Court’s record of 24 major singles titles.
Naomi took the win by defeating Serena 6-3, 6-4. This is not the first time Osaka has won against Serena. Earlier in the 2018 US Open Final, she also defeated Williams achieving her fourth major title match win.
At the start of the 2021 Australian Open match, Osaka was looking unsteady but she quickly readjusted throwing in three double faults and reaching an impressive 122mph ace during the game.
Approximately 7000 people were allowed entry into the stadium for this highly anticipated match while other spectators watched from the back stands. This restriction is due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In her post-match press conference, Serena had an emotional moment and exited the room in tears after saying: “I don’t know, I’m done .”When earlier asked if she was indicating a farewell by a reporter, she responded, “I don’t know. If I ever say farewell, I wouldn’t tell anyone. So…”
She further addressed her fans on Instagram, writing: “Melbourne and my Australian fans- Today was not ideal outcome or performance, but it happens… I am so honored to be able to play in front of you all. Your support -your cheers, I only wish I could have done better for you today. I am forever in debt and grateful to each and every one single one of you. I love you. I love you. I love you. I adore you.”
The battle is far from over for the reigning champion Osaka as she is set to face Jennifer Brady, a first-time Grand Slam finalist, on Saturday for the championship.