Naomi Osaka Australian Open 2022

Andy Murray and Naomi Osaka share the love after Australian Open progress

Naomi Osaka was left “shocked” when Andy Murray praised her game in an uplifting Twitter exchange after she progressed to the third round of the Australian Open.

Defending ‘Happy Slam’ champion Osaka will face American youngster Amanda Anisimova in the third round after beating Madison Brengle.

Should Osaka overcome Anisimova, she could potentially set up a fourth round clash with World number one and home favourite Ashleigh Barty. In order for this to happen, Barty also has to beat 30th seed Camila Giorgi.

During Osaka’s win over Brengle, Three-time Grand Slam victor Murray tweeted his praise for the Japanese star’s game. In the Tweet, Murray questioned whether “anyone hit the ball cleaner from the baseline than Naomi Osaka?”

Murray also progressed to the second round after a gruelling five-set thriller against World number 23 Nikoloz Basilashvili and will face Japanese qualifier Taro Daniel in the next round.

In response to Murray’s praise, Osaka replied with acclamation of her own. The four-time Grand Slam titlist Tweeted “anyone put their heart on their sleeve and fight harder than Andy Murray?”

When asked about the wholesome exchange in a post-match press conference, Osaka said “it’s a little bit shocking to me to see Andy Murray tweet about me.

“I hit with him once like three years ago. It was really cool to have someone like him talking about my game.”

Osaka is hoping to have a “more enjoyable” 2022 season after she took a four-month-long hiatus to prioritise her mental health.

This comes after she withdrew from both the French Open and Wimbledon last year when she revealed she had been suffering with depression and anxiety.

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.