By: Alex Clelland
MELBOURNE, Australia – Naomi Osaka took home her fourth Grand Slam after winning the 2021 Australian Open women's title against American Jennifer Brady with a final score of 6-4, 6-3.
Osaka finished the Open with a perfect 7-0 record and was the favourite to earn another major title against Brady. This was Osaka’s second Australian Open title.
Despite Brady’s perseverance and getting a break in the fifth game and holding her serve, Osaka was relentless, taking a 4-0 lead in the set.
Both women kept their game strong throught the match, with Brady bouncing back and Osaka fighting for her fourth title, inevitably winning.
Osaka won their last meeting in three sets at the 2020 U.S. Open semifinals, with a score of 7-6, 3-6, 6-3.
The 23-year-old Japan native also humbled her idol, Serena Williams, after beating Williams on the court Thursday afternoon. Osaka is now riding an impressive 21-match win streak.
During her acceptance of the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup, Osaka graciously complemented Brady’s game.
She had a cute moment during her speech, asking Brady if she preferred to be called “Jenny” or “Jennifer,” and congratulated her opponent, reflecting on their previous semi-finals match at the U.S Open.
“I told everyone that would listen that you would be a problem, and I was right,” Osaka praised.
The Rod Laver stadium was allowed to be at half-capacity for the match following COVID-19 restrictions in Melbourne.
Osaka thanked the city for allowing fans at their match. Her previous Grand Slam was played without fans and Osaka noted the change in energy.
“Thank you guys for coming and watching,” Osaka told fans. “It feels really incredible to me. To have this energy, it really means a lot, thank you for opening your arms and your hearts to us.”
Osaka will be playing in the Miami Open beginning on March 22.