Naomi Osaka (L) greet Serena Williams at the end of their women’s singles semi-final match on day eleven of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne. AFP
Naomi Osaka powered into the Australian Open final on Thursday to stay on track for a fourth Grand Slam title and keep Serena Williams’ dream of a record-equalling 24th major title on hold once more.
The Japanese third seed swept past the American veteran 6-3, 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena in front of thousands of fans allowed back in after Melbourne lifted a snap five-day lockdown.
She will face either American Jennifer Brady or Czech Karolina Muchova on Saturday for another Slam title after her success at Flushing Meadows in 2018 and last year, and Melbourne in 2019.