TORONTO, Canada - By virtue of reaching the Rogers Cup quarterfinals, Naomi Osaka is set to return to the WTA World No.1 spot for the second time in her career when the new rankings are made official on Monday, August 12.
Earlier in the tournament, reigning World No.1 Ashleigh Barty suffered an opening round stunner to a dialed-in Sofia Kenin - opening the door for former No.1s Osaka and Karolina Pliskova to return to the top.
As the tournament progressed, the scenarios became clearer: should Pliskova fail to advance to the Rogers Cup semifinals, Osaka would claim the No.1 spot. Up against an indefatigable Bianca Andreescu on a rocking Centre Court, Pliskova narrowly fell in a three-set thriller, 6-0, 2-6, 6-4.
This meant that Osaka, who is set to take the court tonight for her quarterfinal clash against Serena Williams - a rematch of the 2018 US Open final - has officially clinched the top spot, marking her 22nd week atop the WTA rankings.
She will end Barty’s reign at the top, after the Aussie held the No.1 ranking for seven weeks following back-to-back title runs at Roland Garros and Birmingham.
Osaka first rose to the WTA’s highest ranking earlier in the year on January 28, when her Australian Open crown made her the first Japanese player – man or woman – to achieve this historic milestone since computer rankings were introduced in 1975.
At 21 years, 104 days old, Osaka was the youngest player to make her No.1 debut since 2010 when Caroline Wozniacki achieved this milestone at 20 years, 92 days old.