Naomi Osaka backhand

Naomi Osaka outlines her plans to make herself a force at Wimbledon

Naomi Osaka believes grass court tennis really suits her game, and she is confident she can prove it at Wimbledon this year.

The world number one has admitted she doesn’t feel altogether comfortable on the surface before, although she now insists that is down to a lack of available practice rather than anything inherently incompatible with her game.

Osaka grew up playing on American hardcourts, with both of her Grand Slam titles coming on that surface.

By comparison, she has never been beyond the third round at either the French Open or Wimbledon, but she says she has a plan to change all that – starting at SW19 this summer.

“For me, it’s always a bit nerve-racking to play on grass. Especially since I haven’t been able to practice that many times here, it’s a bit tough to adjust.

“I want to have a high service percentage, because I think on grass it’s really important to hold your serve.

“It’s a surface that I think suits my game and I think that I have a lot of potential to play well, so hopefully one day it will click.”

Osaka has appeared to struggle with the pressures of being world number one since accomplishing it at the Australian Open. She has even admitted herself she feels she has been a little too preoccupied with that at times, especially at the recent French Open, and it has cost her matches.

However, she is now ready to start relaxing about that and finding the many positives instead.

“If I lose in the first round, I don’t deserve to be number one,” she said. “I always have a lot of fun playing against tough opponents.

“Of course, it’s stressful during, but there’s always flashes of bouts for me that I always think: ‘there is nothing else I would rather be doing’.

“Some people don’t get to travel that much and I get to travel just to play tennis and for that, I’m extremely grateful.”

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Michael Graham, Editor, has been a professional sports journalist for his whole career and is especially passionate about tennis. He's been the Editor of for over 5 years and loves watching live tennis by visiting as many tournaments as possible. Michael specialises in writing in-depth features about the ATP & WTA tours.