Naomi Osaka French Open 2021

Naomi Osaka feeling ‘refreshed’ at ‘nerve-wracking’ home Olympics

Naomi Osaka has revealed she feels “definitely a little bit refreshed and happy again” after making her return to action at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The world number two has defeated Zheng Saisai and Viktorija Golubic without losing a set to progress to the last 16 on her Olympic debut.

Osaka will play the world number 42 – Czech Republic’s Marketa Vondrousova – in her next match on Tuesday.

The Japanese star had not appeared since the French Open almost two months ago – which she withdrew from citing mental health reasons.

“I feel definitely a little bit refreshed and happy again. I feel like, more than anything, I’m just focused on playing tennis,” the 23-year-old said in a post-match interview.

“I felt really nervous being in Japan (ahead of her first round win), and playing here for the first time in maybe two years, and for it to be my first Olympics. It was definitely really nerve-wracking.”

Osaka is the highest seed left in the tournament after world number one Ash Barty exited in the first round, while third seed Aryna Sabalenka fell in the second round today.

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.