February 3, 2023

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Naomi Osaka: Four-time Grand Slam winner announces pregnancy

Naomi OsakaOsaka has won two Australian Open and two US Open titles. Dates: January 16-29. Venue: Melbourne Park

Four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka has announced her pregnancy.

“2023 will be a year of lessons for me,” Osaka said, adding that she hopes to return in 2024.

“One thing I look forward to is when my kid sees one of my games and says to someone, ‘This is my mom.'”

Osaka won the last of their four Grand Slams at the Australian Open in 2021.

However, she has spoken of the struggles she has faced since that memorable title win.

In May 2021, after retiring from the French Open, she revealed that she had “suffered from long depressions” since winning her first major title, the US Open, in 2018.

In September 2021, she took a five-month break from sports.

She lost on her return in the third round of the Australian Open, then the first round of the French Open, missed Wimbledon through injury and lost in the opening round of the US Open.

Osaka last played at the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo in September and has fallen to 47th in the world rankings.

“The last few years have been interesting to say the least, but I find that it’s the most challenging times in life that are perhaps the most fun,” Osaka added, announcing her pregnancy on social media.

“Those few months away from the sport have really given me a renewed love and appreciation for the game I’ve dedicated my life to.

“I realize life is so short and I don’t take any moments for granted, every day is a new blessing and a new adventure.

“I know I have so much to look forward to in the future.”

Osaka is the latest high-profile player to take a break from tennis due to pregnancy.

Three-time German Grand Slam champion Angelique Kerber announced her pregnancy in August and hinted she will return after giving birth, while former world number three Elina Svitolina is expected to return later this year after giving birth to her last October will make a comeback.

Serena Williams took a childbirth break in 2017 and returned later that same year to continue acting before retiring in 2022.

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