Greek tennis phenom Maria Sakkari stopped Naomi Osaka’s winning streak in a stunning victory to advance into her first Miami Open semifinal.
Ranked at Number 23 in the world, Sakkari ended Naomi Osaka’s seemingly-unstoppable 23-match winning streak after the American player looked to the skies, appearing to ask the heavens for help as the Greek player closed in on the win.
Maria Sakkari Reacts to Epic Win
“I think I played a great first set for sure,” Sakkari told Tennis Channel’s Prakash Amritraj afterward. “I didn’t make a lot of unforced errors. I just came out with a good game plan.
Against Sakkari, the only Greek woman ranked in the top 250, Osaka lost 15 consecutive points on her serve and she then threw away a 4-1 lead in the second set.
She faced a break point on seven of her eight service games.
Osaka said to the press after the match “Today’s service problems kind of came out of nowhere. My first serve wasn’t going in at all today.”
Sakkari’s Unique Accomplishments for Greek Tennis
Sakkari reached her career-high singles ranking of No. 20 on February 24, 2020. Her best WTA doubles ranking is No. 169, achieved on 9 September 2019. Sakkari has won one singles title on the WTA Tour, at 2019 Morocco Open, where she defeated Johanna Konta in the final.
Last September, Sakkari cruised over No.22 seed Amanda Anisimova after only 55 minutes to book a place in the fourth round of the US Open.
The No.15 seed won in rapid fashion by 6-3, 6-1 and became the first Greek woman to reach the second week in Flushing Meadows since Eleni Daniilidou in 2004.
The Greek tennis champion is known for her aggressive, all-court style of play, centered around her strong serve and powerful groundstrokes. Sakkari served the sixth most aces of any player in 2020, with 144 aces served in 31 matches.