Japan's Osaka romps into Tokyo final

Doug Mendoza
September 25, 2018

Osaka's victory in front of an expectant home crowd was her 10th in a row and did not look in doubt from the moment the world number seven pounded down a huge ace with her first serve of the match.

Karolina Pliskova, right, of Czech Republic, holds her champion trophy and Naomi Osaka, left, of Japan holds her runner-up trophy during the award ceremony of the Pan Pacific Open women's tennis tournament in Tokyo Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018.

The strong run of form continued for Osaka and Wozniacki at their next tournament, the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo.

Third-seed Osaka, 20, said after the match that she "felt really exhausted today" and that she "wasn't doing the little things well", after having not dropped a set in tournament until Sunday.

"Today was the first match that I felt nervous". "Stan is one of the best players in the world and I'm really proud of myself after I could beat him finally. I'm trying to stay at a consistent level so hopefully I can keep doing that". The Dutchwoman stayed in contention with a 7-6 (7-2), 4-6, 6-2 win over Australian Ajla Tomljanovic in the Korea Open final yesterday.

The former world number one started as if intent on finishing the contest as quickly as possible, storming to a 4-0 lead before wrapping up the first set in less than half an hour.

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Prior to the final, Pliskova had spent 419 minutes on court, more than any other player and nearly twice as long as Osaka, but the Japanese player soon wilted and was unable to match the brilliance that secured her a first Grand Slam title.

Pliskova broke once in each set in the decider, while Osaka - whose 10-match winning streak came to an end - was unable to set up a break-point opportunity. The quarterfinalist at the US Open, Pliskova has reached the finals with a three-set victory in all her matches in Tokyo.

"It's the final, so you just forget about all those minutes that you spent on the court". "I was getting exhausted from the match, so it was not as fast as I wanted to serve". Pliskova is ninth in the race, with the top eight players qualifying for Singapore, behind Seoul finalist Kiki Bertens.

Osaka won just 12 points against the Pliskova serve, the big-hitting Czech recording her second win in three meetings with the 20-year-old. "I haven't really had much time to rest, so I feel exhausted right now".

Pliskova added: "I know her game". "I have my weapons, she also has some. It's going to be a lot about serves".

Other reports by GizPress

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