What we learned from the 2018 U.S. Open
Naomi Osaka and Novak Djokovic are the 2018 US Open Champions.
It was quite the ending to the finals of the U.S. Open. There was a controversial conclusion on the women’s side that saw Serena Williams claim sexism from chair umpire Carlos Ramos, whereas on the men’s things were routine. Here is the breakdown
Naomi Osaka is the real deal
For a couple of seasons, tennis fans knew the potential of Naomi Osaka. She has a big game that many believed would lead to big titles. Naomi became even more of a threat when former hitting partner of Serena Williams, Sasha Bajin, decided to coach her. Their partnership immediately paid off with Osaka winning a premiere event in Indian Wells. Many wondered if she could produce that same level of tennis at a grand slam. For the past two weeks, she did.
Except for a fourth-round match that went three sets, Osaka won the title handily. In the finals, against her idol and tennis legend Serena Williams, Naomi was poised and relentless in her game. There were many controversial moments between Serena and chair umpire calling the match and Naomi was also up against a New York audience that heavily favored Serena however in the end, Osaka was undeterred. Osaka was given a point and a game due to Serena’s actions but no doubt she did not need help in winning games. With her grand slam win, Naomi became the first Japanese woman to win a grand slam
Novak Djokovic is officially back!
It is hard to believe that Novak Djokovic was able to win two grand slams this season. At the beginning of the year tennis fans wondered how long it would take Novak to win again, after losing early in Australia. Slowly but surely, he started to play well and it all came together on grass when Djokovic won the Wimbledon Championships.
In New York, Djokovic showed that Wimbledon was no fluke and that he really is back to his form. Novak had some early struggles in the first two rounds, due mostly to the heat. But once it cooled off, Djokovic cruised in the tournament, beating quality players easily. In the finals, he beat Juan Martin del Potro in straight sets. With his win in New, Djokovic tied Pete Sampras with 14 grand slams. He is now currently ranked number three and has a chance to regain the number one ranking.
Though the grand slam season is over there is still a lot of tennis to be played. It will be interesting to see how Serena Williams will bounce back from her stunning defeat (and intense media scrutiny), how Osaka plays the remainder of the year and if Roger and Rafa can make their last stamp on the year. Only way to know is to continue watching.