Naomi Osaka is not only a world-class tennis player, but also someone who is paying it forward for a whole future generation of potential stars.
After a match at the U.S. Open this week, Osaka made a young fan’s day after she gifted her a pin she received at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
News cameras captured the sweet moment when the 23-year-old handed something to a very excited child following her victory against Marie Bouzkova on Tuesday (August 31). When an interviewer asked Osaka what she gave the young Black girl, she revealed what it was.
“I just heard her when I was playing my match, and she was so cute, so thank you for cheering me on,” she explained. “In the Olympics, we got little pins that we were supposed to pass around to other players, you know, like trading pins. And I wasn’t there for a long time, so I have a couple in my bag that are leftover. I thought it would be a nice little memory.”
The girl’s father, composer Tim Blacksmith, later took to Instagram to thank Osaka for making his daughter’s day.
“Dear Sister @naomiosaka, Thank You So Much for Making My Daughters First @usopen Such A Truly Memorable One. Much Love & Blessings,” he wrote on IG.
With her victory on Tuesday, Naomi Osaka advanced to the third round of the U.S. Open after her opponent Olga Danilovic withdrew from the tournament due to an illness.