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Naomi Osaka sheds tears after reaching Miami Open final

Naomi Osaka had another crying episode on the pitch but this time she shed tears of joy.

Osaka was brought to tears on Thursday after securing a spot in the Miami Open final with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic in the semifinals.

“Damn, I always cry, but this tournament means a lot to me,” Osaka said after the game.

The emotional moment marked the first time Osaka received a ticket to the final of their home tournament, the Miami Open. It was also a very special triumph for Osaka, who had not earned a spot in a final since the 2021 Australian Open. Previously, she had failed three times against Bencic.

“I felt like I didn’t understand her at all, and somehow I managed to win,” Osaka said of her opponent. “She is a fantastic player. I wish I had her back.”

She thanked “everyone” and praised the “really good atmosphere” at Hard Rock Stadium.

After the game, Osaka tweeted, “You know what’s going on, but I’m so grateful right now. Cheers to the ups and downs of life that make me appreciate this moment even more. We’re back in a final, see you on Saturday.”

Just days ago, Osaka opened up to reporters about her decision to “finally” seek therapy after heckling in Indian Wells earlier this month.

Naomi Osaka
Naomi Osaka shed tears of joy after reaching her first final since the 2021 Australian Open.
Getty Images

Osaka entered the Miami Open after hitting rock bottom in Indian Wells when a fan shouted “Naomi, you shit!” during her match against Veronika Kudermetova on March 12. She addressed the incident in a tearful speech after falling to the Russian in straight sets and ending her run at Indian Wells.

four days later Osaka tweeted an encouraging message about her mental health, writing, “Very proud of myself for having reached a point in my life where despite the lows I would still rather be myself than anyone else.”

The tennis star has been open about her struggles with mental health. Skipping Wimbledon last July, she said at the time that she had “suffered a long time from depression” since her first Grand Slam title in 2018.

Osaka, 24, will compete in the final of the Miami Open on Saturday and will face new world No. 1 Iga Swiatek of Poland.

https://nypost.com/2022/04/01/naomi-osaka-sheds-tears-after-advancing-to-miami-open-final/ Naomi Osaka sheds tears after reaching Miami Open final

JOE HERNANDEZ

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