tennis

Composure on big stage fuels Osaka's rise to top

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A great inspiration for young Haitian-Americans everywhere.

Naomi-chan is a great inspiration for many millions of Japanese kids everywhere. Try your hardest, never give up, fight and show respect and humility. And NEVER swear and abuse others while playing. One day you may also be world number one!

-9 ( +11 / -20 )

A great inspiration for young Haitian-Americans everywhere.

Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the world. One is sure the struggling people of that unfortunate land will be thrilled by her victory and rise to number 1 in the world. Hopefully we'll soon see her visiting Haiti and lending her celebrity status and new found wealth to improving the economy there.

14 ( +17 / -3 )

Alvie, “Hopefully we'll soon see her visiting Haiti and lending her celebrity status and new found wealth to improving the economy there.”

We've already seen her visiting Haiti, meeting the President, etc.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Good for her! Japan is proud of her and her accomplishments

-9 ( +4 / -13 )

.

What makes her ever so special is how she is - due to her parentage - representative of the "NEW" Japan.

She validates the emerging status of all 'international' Japanese children.

I love it !!!!

.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

We've already seen her visiting Haiti, meeting the President, etc.

Ah, I must have missed that. Good for her.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

No need to argue over where Naomi was born or where her parents were from, just be happy for her amazing accomplishments!

10 ( +11 / -1 )

I'm glad that Naomi Osaka is showing a respectable and humble side of professional sports. Hope she continues to win and make her family proud.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

A lot of pressure on Osaka's shoulders now. She seems like she has the right attitude/mindset for the challenges ahead. Good luck. I definitely think it's a good thing she doesn't live in Japan where the overzealous media can have a disastrous effect.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Although I know it would never happen I'd love to see her make a bigger deal of not being able to keep both nationalities when she gets old enough. She'd likely take Japan since she'll be a legend here and have countless sponsorship opportunities, but imagine the shock if she chose American, might actually start a really big debate that could eventually lead to change in the system.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

"Tennis is a game, and I mean, always try your best, but don't look up to me because I don't want that responsibility," she said.

Well said! Very happy she won the whole thing. Nerves of steel & a powerful serve is a pretty lethal combo!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Educator60 We've already seen her visiting Haiti, meeting the President, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3fOV4olP25c

The anti-multiculturalists' heads must explode (internet meme) each time they read about Ms Osaka's ethnic and cultural background, then see her coach is Serbian and her strength and conditioning coach is American Abdul Sillah.

Naomi Osaka is a heroic person to those who value individualism and accept it in all its various forms.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Brighton Bathing Boxes background. Nice.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Why is ones ethnicity, skin color or faith always in the limelight of articles these days. At the end of the day, work hard to achieve results, regardless of who you are. Believe in yourself

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@PTownsend--even her coach Sascha Bajin is not only Serbian, since he is a German national. But I agree with the spirit of your post lauding team Osaka's diversity.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Can schools in Japan now start implementing actually tennis and do away with soft tennis, especially JHS? I have met so many kids that would love to play real tennis, but a majority of public schools just don't bother. So much wasted talent.

Japan has two top tennis players in both the men and women games, time to change the game in Japan at grassroot level.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Composure on big stage fuels Osaka's rise to top

She had and lost three straight Championship points in the second set and visibly lost her cool afterwards. She went on to lose the set and it looked like it would cost her the match. She did really well to recover and win the third set.

She's a fantastic talent and has earned the number one spot, but her composure is more remarkable off the court, with the nationality issue and the Serena controversy. On the court, I think it will come, but it will take more experience. A more composed player with the same talent as Osaka would closed it out in two sets.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Kenji FujimoriToday  11:17 am JST

"Why is ones ethnicity, skin color or faith always in the limelight of articles these days. At the end of the day, work hard to achieve results, regardless of who you are. Believe in yourself."

This is a great question. From the tone of your question, I assume you think we talk about race too much.

You might well be correct. It is a shame when we are always talking about someone's ethnicity as if it is the most important thing about them. Like, Dr. King, we all look forward to "the day when someone's skin is of no more importance than the color of their eyes".

But we are not quite there yet are we?

Only a few weeks ago, a biracial Japanese girls' parents launched a court case (I think it was in Yamanashi) again a schoolteacher who cut their daughters hair (which was not straight and black, in the traditional Japanese fashion), humiliating her in front of her classmates, and traumatizing her into never coming back to the school. There are many, many examples of similar discrimination in Japan. Remember Arianna Miyamato's sad tale about her "hafu" friend who killed himself.

So not all mixed race Japanese children are tennis champions and not all mixed race Japanese children are welcomed with open arms. There are certain contradictions in society's attitudes over Osaka that are worth examining, I think.

There is still a fight to be fought. The question is how to go about it?

Does raising the issue of ethnicity in certain contexts help, by drawing attention to those of a similar ethnicity who are facing unfair obstacles in their lives?

Or does it hinder, by making people constantly aware of the divisions?

I really don't know.

The trouble is (to simplify somewhat) there are two camps of people who don't ever want to talk about race, ever.

In the first camp, there are those who genuinely believe never referring to race is the best way to move forward and ensure we are all skin color-blind, judging people only on the "content of their characters".

In the second camp, there are those who never want people to refer to race ever as they are quite happy with the status quo, they don't care if people who are different from them are disadvantaged, and they don't believe anything should be done to help those like the poor girl in the above example.

This is particularly the case in Japan where the default position on anything that makes Japan look bad internationally should be swept under the rug.

Sometimes, from simple online comments, it is hard to tell the difference between the "not speaking about race is the best way to achieve equality" position and the "there is nothing to see here, no problem, move along" position. Sometimes one can look a lot like the other.

"Why is ones ethnicity, skin color or faith always in the limelight of articles these days?"

Yes, this is a great question.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Jpn_guy

Yes every media company abroad and here always talks race etc,

If a person can't see the other person for being HUMAN and for HUMAN ACHIEVEMENTS, and basing it on national pride,.race etc is no human in my eyes..

Unless we are a different species, reiterating or over emphasising race in the wordings of the media, is is inhumane and wrong. No peace goes forward in life. Just bickering and negativity and finger pointing

3 ( +3 / -0 )

And no race is perfect, there's the good and bad in all cultures, but the media's continued aggression and negativity on race /skin color/faith

Is totally wrong, superiority complex? Or just media trying to gain clicks for ad revenue as usual

2 ( +3 / -1 )

"Unless we are a different species, reiterating or over emphasising race in the wordings of the media, is is inhumane and wrong. No peace goes forward in life. Just bickering and negativity and finger pointing".

This is true. But, the opposite can be true too. In the newspaper articles on the "hafu" kid whose hair was cut by her teacher in front of the class, there was no mention of her ethnicity. This completely removes from the story the context that the girl's hair was cut because, like Naomi Osaka's, it is not straight and black like "proper" Japanese hair. So in this instance, the problem is being covered up, and this kind of media reporting is what leads to people making untrue statements such as "there is no racism in Japan".

That is why I don't think it is as simple as just never mentioning race. Then the people who discriminate get to do so without criticism and without their actions coming to light.

But how can we tackle these issues (when certain people are discriminated against on account of who they are) and ensure everyone is respected without dividing people into groups and practicing "identity politics"?I'

The whole area is a minefield, but I'm not sure 'we should stop talking about race' is quite the right answer.

It is good for people in Japan to be forced to see the contradiction between how Naomi Osaka is lauded and how she might be treated if she lived in say, rural Yamanashi, and was not a famous tennis player. Not talking about this issue does no make it go away.

Much respect too for your above post.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

She validates the emerging status of all 'international' Japanese children. I love it !!!!

yep she validated the fact that being Japanese isnt solely the homologous society in both ethnicity and culture it was once thought to be. A victory for halfu kids/adults in Japan.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Jpn_guy

Its all the biased negative media trying to shape peoples opinion, no different to Googles biased results, in a sense mind control of the masses.

Divide and conquer as the old saying goes..

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Japan has two top tennis players in both the men and women games, time to change the game in Japan at grassroot level.

I dont know I drove past the local tennis club a couple days ago and it was packed with young students.

never ever aeen like that

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I like "madden's" comment!

"Although I know it would never happen I'd love to see her make a bigger deal of not being able to keep both nationalities when she gets old enough. ........."

Maybe, but only maybe her well-deserved success will also have impact on the dual-citizenship question.

People like her can bring the change!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"Although I know it would never happen I'd love to see her make a bigger deal of not being able to keep both nationalities when she gets old enough. ........."

Like my son, as she was born with Japanese citizenship she can keep both it and any other nationalities she has at the moment. As long as she chooses Japanese citizenship the Japanese government cannot do anything if she also keeps her other citizenships. That's the law.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Kenji FujimoriToday 

"Its all the biased negative media trying to shape peoples opinion, no different to Googles biased results, in a sense mind control of the masses.

Divide and conquer as the old saying goes.."

Do you have any opinion on what to do when people are on the end of genuine discriminatory treatment.? Saying references to race in the media is all about mind control does not help mixed race gets getting ostracized at school, for example.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Jpn_Guy

I am all for equality and fairness, Osaka could use her fame and power in the media to address the issue directly to the Japanese media and parliament, if she is hiding under the radar and does not speak up, then typical Japanese would think 'the nail that sticks out, the hammer comes down hard' mentality

3 ( +4 / -1 )

jpn_guy and Kenji Fujimori

Great comments, mates. I tip my hat off to you two.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

maybe one day she delight Japanese crowds by learning to speak Japanese?

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Jaymann She doesn't have to speak Japanese to delight Japanese crowds, she's already delighting them and crowds around the world with her tennis performance and wonderful personality.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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