MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Naomi Osaka never made it past the fourth round at any of the first 10 Grand Slam tournaments of her career. Now, still just 21, shes suddenly on the verge of a second consecutive major championship.
And the No. 1 ranking, too.
Osaka moved one victory away from adding the Australian Open trophy to the one she collected 4½ months ago at the U.S. Open, using her smooth power to produce 15 aces and groundstroke winners at will while beating Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 in the semifinals today.