Osaka, who has power to match Williams’s, seems ready to counterpunch. Most points are ending off Williams’s racket, for better or worse.
Osaka won a long exchange of forehands in the third game to level it, and then converted the first break point of the match when Williams double-faulted.
Unsurprisingly, the crowd appears to be on Williams’s side. Shouts of “Let’s go, Serena!” came out before the match began. She was cheered on encouragingly after double-faulting in the second point of the match. When Osaka also double-faulted on her own second service point, the applause seemed to be more in response to Williams winning the point.
‘I wouldn’t be human if I wasn’t nervous’
Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka have walked onto Arthur Ashe Stadium for the U.S. Open final, which will be officiated by chair umpire Carlos Ramos.
In a prematch interview, Osaka told ESPN’s Tom Rinaldi that “of course I feel like I wouldn’t be human if I wasn’t nervous.” She said she…