Osaka beats Azarenka to win US Open and third Grand Slam
NEW YORK, SEPT 13: Japan's Naomi Osaka came from a set down to beat Victoria Azarenka of Belarus to win the US Open on Saturday and clinch her third Grand Slam title.
Osaka, the fourth seed, overcame her unseeded opponent 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 inside a near-empty Arthur Ashe Stadium at Flushing Meadows.
It brought 22-year-old Osaka's haul of tennis major trophies to three after her victories at the 2018 US Open and 2019 Australian Open.
"I didn't really enjoy that. It was a really tough match for me," Osaka said following her 1hr 53min victory that delivers her prize money of $3 million.
Azarenka, 31, sprinted to the first set in just 26 minutes, dominating Osaka with an 88 percent success rate on her first serve.
The Japanese was uncharacteristically sloppy, hitting a whopping 13 unforced errors.
Azarenka then went 2-0 ahead in the second set before Osaka fought back to break her opponent's serve twice and take a 4-3 lead.
The momentum had quickly swung in Osaka's favor and she broke a third time to push the match to a deciding set.
Osaka enjoyed the first breakthrough of set three in game four when she broke Azarenka's serve to take a 3-1 lead.
Azarenka then blew a golden opportunity to get back into the match, wasting three break points as Osaka recovered from 0-40 to hold for a 4-1 lead.
Azarenka saved four break points to make it 4-2 as she battled to keep the contest alive. -AFP