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Osaka’s Rome run thwarted 

Naomi Osaka Announces She Is Pregnant and Won't Play in 2023 - The New York  Times

Naomi Osaka’s return to the Rome Open ended at the last 16 on Monday after the four-time Grand Slam champion fell 6-2, 6-3 to seventh-seed Zheng Qinwen.

Japan’s Osaka was playing at the Foro Italico for the first time in three years after taking a break from the tour to have her first child and is ranked at 173 in the world.

The furthest she has gone in any tournament so far this season was her run to the quarterfinals in Doha, which she could not replicate in the Italian capital.

However it was a positive tournament for Osaka, who has never won a title on clay but beat a top-20 ranked player on the surface for the first time, against Marta Kostyuk in the second round on Thursday.

China’s Zheng breezed past Osaka in one hour and 24 minutes to set up a last-eight clash with either Paula Badosa or third seed Coco Gauff.

Later Iga Swiatek continues her bid for a third Rome title against Angelique Kerber, while Australian Open champion Aryna Sabalenka will face Elina Svitolina for the first time since their handshake row at last year’s French Open.

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