She could not be stopped en route to the title at the BNP Paribas Open, and for her efforts in the Sunshine Swing, Naomi Osaka earned your votes to be named March's Player of the Month.
WTA Staff
April 6, 2018

She could not be stopped en route to the title at the BNP Paribas Open, and for her efforts in the Sunshine Swing, Naomi Osaka earned your votes to be named March's Player of the Month.

The Japanese No.1 kicked off her March with a bang, as she claimed her first professional singles title of any kind with a stunning run at the first Premier Mandatory event of the season in Indian Wells.

After defeating former champion Maria Sharapova in a much-anticipated first round under the lights, Osaka's run continued against Agnieszka Radwanska, Sachia Vickery, Maria Sakkari, Karolina Pliskova and World No.1 Simona Halep with the loss of just one set to reach her second WTA final. 

In the championship, Osaka defeated fellow 20-year-old Daria Kasatkina in straight sets to cap a dream fortnight, and rose over 20 spots in the rankings to a career-high of World No.22 as a result.

Read more: Champions Corner: Naomi Osaka dominates the California desert

"Every match that I've played I've thought, just don't give up no matter what, because everyone I played was super tough," Osaka told WTA Insider after the match. 

"I feel like that's really helped me and my mentality of coming to the finals and eventually winning. So I'm really grateful for the experience."

Osaka became the first player to win her first WTA singles title at Indian Wells since Slovakia's Daniela Hantuchova in 2002, and the third unseeded champion in the desert after Serena Williams (1999) and Kim Clijsters (2005).

Read more: As it happened: Osaka crowned in desert at BNP Paribas Open

Already the youngest finalist at the BNP Paribas Open (20 years and 153 days) since Caroline Wozniacki (19 years, 253 days) was runner-up in 2010, Osaka also became youngest woman to raise the trophy since Ana Ivanovic (20 years, 138 days) did so 10 years ago in 2008.

To start the Miami Open, Osaka also claimed a victory against childhood idol, Serena Williams, in straight sets in the first round, before seeing her eight-match winning streak stopped by Elina Svitolina.

Final Results for March's WTA Player of the Month

1. Naomi Osaka (52%)
2. Daria Kasatkina (20%)
3. Sloane Stephens (15%)
4. Jelena Ostapenko (13%)


How it works:

Finalists are selected by wtatennis.com
Winner is then determined by a fan vote on wtatennis.com
 

Previous WTA Players of the Month for 2018
January: Simona Halep
February: Petra Kvitova