Osaka arrives in Australia ahead of first Grand Slam of 2022
Naomi Osaka touched down at Melbourne airport on Tuesday signalling her intent to return to professional tennis after casting doubt over her future in September. The defending Australian Open women's singles champion lost in the third round at the US Open to the eventual runner-up, 18-year-old Canadian Leylah Fernandez.
After a thrilling three set match between Amanda Anisimova and Naomi Osaka, the defending Australian Open champion has bowed out of the competition.
It was an extremely tense affair as neither women left anything out on the court during the fight for a spot in the fourth round.
However, UK viewers were deprived of the final moments of the match after it was taken off air at 5-5 in the final set.
Osaka got the match off to a dream start, winning the first set 6-4 and looking confident against her American opponent.
However, Anisimova stunned the former world number one with a 6-3 win in the second set, forcing a decider at the Margaret Court Arena.
Osaka found the smile
© supplied by Sports.co.uk Tennis - Open d'Australia: Osaka Happy to be in Melbourne This is an image that had been lost. absent since its elimination in the third round of the US Open against Leylah Fernandez last September, Naomi Osaka started his preparation for the Australian Open, of which she is the title.
The third set went right down to the wire — with both women putting their bodies on the line, the scoreline reached 5-5. But that would be all UK viewers would get the chance to watch as the exhilarating match played out.
Eurosport, the channel airing this year's Australian Open in the UK, switched from Anisimova vs Osaka to its coverage of the Alpine Ski World Cup in Kitzbuhel.
Viewers were left scrambling to find additional ways to watch the match and many missed Anisimova's triumph over the reigning champion. © Provided by Give Me Sport
The coverage continued on channel Discovery+, but the subscription streaming service was unavailable to many, and it has sparked a lot of complaints on social media.
What seems to have irked supporters the most is that Eurosport opted to show the build up to Rafael Nadal's match against Karen Khachanov, rather than the final moments of a clash featuring the reigning Australian Open women's champion.
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"Terrible decision by Eurosport to leave Osaka-Anisimova at 5-5 in the third," one Twitter user wrote.
"Eurosport are embarrassing. How can they dump the match at 5-5 in [the] decider for skiing? Could easily have put it on ES1 instead of Nadal warmup," another said.
Another Twitter user has branded the decision to pull the match as "outrageous."
Ultimately, limited viewers were able to watch the final minutes of the third round clash, which saw world number 60 Anisimova triumph over one of the tournament's favourites.
TGV Barty! .
© Provided by Sports.co.uk Tennis - Open d'Australia (F): Barty spray KEYS and closes the final for the first time Australia was waiting for it for forty-two years! For the first time since 1980 and the defeat of Wendy Turnbull against the Czech Hana Mandlikova, no more Australian playful had been invited in Melbourne. Ashleigh Barty ended this long period of screens, this Thursday leaving only crumbs (6-1, 6-3 in 1h04 of the game) to his opponent in the first half-final Madison Keys.