Japan’s Naomi Osaka, the star of the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony, began her quest for gold on Sunday with a 6-1, 6-4 win over China’s Zheng Saisai in her first match since taking a break for mental health reasons.
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The second-seeded Osaka, the favourite for gold following the shock first-round exit of Ashleigh Barty, will play Switzerland’s Viktorija Golubic in the last 32.
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Australian Open champion Osaka had not played since May, when she walked out of the French Open saying that media commitments were harming her mental health.
Osaka, who was chosen to light the Olympic cauldron on Friday, is attempting to become her country’s first Olympic tennis champion.