Australian Open: Naomi Osaka upset by Amanda Anisimova

Amanda Anisimova Australian Open
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American Amanda Anisimova ended Naomi Osaka‘s title defense at the Australian Open, pulling off a 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (5) upset in the third round on Friday.

“I fought for every point. I can’t be sad about that,” said Osaka, whose ranking will fall from No. 14 to outside the top 50 in part because of her well-documented breaks last season. “I’m not God. I can’t win every match. … I can’t think of myself to try to win the Grand Slam at the start of the year every time.”


Osaka, who won in Melbourne in 2019 and 2021, took two hiatuses from the sport last year, including a season-ending one after losing in the third round of the U.S. Open.

Back then, Osaka said that winning didn’t make her happy anymore and that she didn’t know when she would play her next tennis match. It didn’t happen until the first week of January at an Australian Open warm-up tournament, but she has been in good spirits Down Under.

“I grew a lot in this match,” she said. “The last match that I played in New York I think I had a completely different attitude. Of course I lost, but I’m happy with how it went.”

Anisimova, a 2019 French Open semifinalist at age 17, is back on the rise after a challenging two years that included the unexpected death of her father one week before the 2019 U.S. Open.

Osaka broke her in the opening game, but Anisimova faced just seven break points the rest of the match and saved all of them, including two match points.

“This is everything that I train for,” Anisimova said. “I mean, I was getting goose bumps in the tiebreaker.”

Last season, Anisimova tested positive for the coronavirus shortly before the Australian Open and missed the tournament while isolating in Abu Dhabi.

She then rolled an ankle later that winter and ended up playing just one match in a four-month stretch. She went nearly eight months between winning multiple matches in a tournament and finished 2021 ranked 78th, down 48 spots from 2020.

Anisimova started working with respected Australian coach Darren Cahill going into this season. She won an Australian Open lead-in tournament in Melbourne, her second WTA title and first since April 2019.

“I really wanted to be having these moments again,” Anisimova said. “Sometimes you doubt it, like what if I get injured, and I’ll never be able to play in a Grand Slam again?”

Now she’s into the fourth round of a major for the first time since that 2019 French Open breakthrough. She gets top-ranked Ash Barty, who defeated Anisimova in that French Open semifinal.

Anisimova lost 17 of the first 18 points in that match. Down 5-0, she saved two set points and won six straight games. She then won 17 straight points between the tiebreak and was up a set and a break before Barty came back and won in three en route to her first major title.

“That was a turning point in my career,” Barty said Friday. “It’s exciting to get to play Amanda again.”

Barty, looking to be the first Aussie singles player to win the Australian Open since Chris O’Neil in 1978, rolled No. 30 Camila Giorgi of Italy 6-2, 6-3 on Friday. She has dropped eight games total in three matches.

No. 6 seed Rafael Nadal moved four match wins from a record-breaking 21st men’s singles major title, dumping No. 28 Karen Khachanov of Russia 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 in his first match against a top-40 player since last year’s French Open. He next gets 69th-ranked French veteran Adrian Mannarino.

Other high seeds had a much tougher time advancing into the round of 16 on Friday.

No. 4 Barbora Krejčíková, No. 8 Paula Badosa and No. 7 men’s seed Matteo Berrettini were also pushed to deciding sets. Berrettini, the 2021 Wimbledon runner-up, needed 4 hours, 10 minutes to dispatch 18-year-old Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz 6-2, 7-6 (3), 4-6, 2-6, 7-6 (5).

Australian Open Day 6 Schedule

No. 2 Daniil Medvedev and No. 4 Stefanos Tsitsipas benefited from an upset in their sections and face unseeded players in the third round — Medvedev gets Botic van de Zandschulp and Tsitsipas faces Benoit Paire.

Taylor Fritz, the highest-seeded U.S. man at No. 20, should produce a more competitive match with No. 15 Roberto Bautista Agut.

No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka needed three sets to win her first two matches with some horrible serving. She might not have that margin for error against her third-round opponent, No. 31 Marketa Vondrousova.

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2023 French Open women’s singles draw, scores

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At the French Open, Iga Swiatek of Poland eyes a third title at Roland Garros and a fourth Grand Slam singles crown overall.

Main draw play began Sunday, live on Peacock.

Swiatek, the No. 1 seed from Poland, can join Serena Williams and Justine Henin as the lone women to win three or more French Opens since 2000.

Turning 22 during the tournament, she can become the youngest woman to win three French Opens since Monica Seles in 1992 and the youngest woman to win four Slams overall since Williams in 2002.

FRENCH OPEN: Broadcast Schedule | Men’s Draw

But Swiatek is not as dominant as in 2022, when she went 16-0 in the spring clay season during an overall 37-match win streak.

She retired from her most recent match with a right thigh injury last week and said it wasn’t serious. Before that, she lost the final of another clay-court tournament to Australian Open champion Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus.

Sabalenka, the No. 2 seed, and Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan, the No. 4 seed and Wimbledon champion, are the top challengers in Paris.

No. 3 Jessica Pegula and No. 6 Coco Gauff, runner-up to Swiatek last year, are the best hopes to become the first American to win a Grand Slam singles title since Sofia Kenin at the 2020 Australian Open. The 11-major drought is the longest for U.S. women since Seles won the 1996 Australian Open.

MORE: All you need to know for 2023 French Open

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2023 French Open Women’s Singles Draw

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2023 French Open men’s singles draw, scores

French Open Men's Draw
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The French Open men’s singles draw is missing injured 14-time champion Rafael Nadal for the first time since 2004, leaving the Coupe des Mousquetaires ripe for the taking.

Main draw play began Sunday, live on Peacock.

Novak Djokovic is not only bidding for a third crown at Roland Garros, but also to lift a 23rd Grand Slam singles trophy to break his tie with Nadal for the most in men’s history.

FRENCH OPEN: Broadcast Schedule | Women’s Draw

But the No. 1 seed is Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz, who won last year’s U.S. Open to become, at 19, the youngest man to win a major since Nadal’s first French Open title in 2005.

Now Alcaraz looks to become the second-youngest man to win at Roland Garros since 1989, after Nadal of course.

Alcaraz missed the Australian Open in January due to a right leg injury, but since went 30-3 with four titles. Notably, he has not faced Djokovic this year. They could meet in the semifinals.

Russian Daniil Medvedev, who lost in the French Open first round in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020, is improved on clay. He won the Italian Open, the last top-level clay event before the French Open, and is the No. 2 seed ahead of Djokovic.

No. 9 Taylor Fritz, No. 12 Frances Tiafoe and No. 16 Tommy Paul are the highest-seeded Americans, all looking to become the first U.S. man to make the French Open quarterfinals since Andre Agassi in 2003. Since then, five different American men combined to make the fourth round on eight occasions.

MORE: All you need to know for 2023 French Open

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2023 French Open Men’s Singles Draw

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