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15 - 23 June 2019

Nature Valley Classic

Edgbaston Priory Club

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Nature Valley Classic: Osaka’s rise since making 2016 debut

  • 2019 WTA Premier logo
  • 29/04/2019

  • Nature Valley Classic

Naomi Osaka was just 18 years old when she made her debut at Edgbaston Priory Club in 2016, ranked world No.93 at the time.

Three years and two Grand Slam titles later, the reigning world No.1 will return to the iconic tournament - taking place 17-23 June - as she sets her sights on an impressive grass court season. 

Since making her maiden appearance in Birmingham, the Japanese star has come a long way. She first tasted title triumph in March 2018 when she lifted the Indian Wells trophy, ousting the fifth and first seeds Karolina Pliskova and Simona Halep respectively en route. Then six months on, she upset the odds by defeating 23-time Grand Slam singles champion Serena Williams in dramatic fashion at the US Open, before making it back-to-back titles by battling past two-time Grand Slam champion Petra Kvitova in Melbourne Park.

Indian Wells, 2018

US Open, 2018

Australian Open, 2019

Osaka's stunning performances gifted her with the world No.1 crown and if she can hold on to her postition at the top of the leaderboard, she will make history by becoming the first player to compete in Birmingham whilst ranked No.1. She will also be targeting her maiden grass court title as she looks to build on her illustrious career to date and carry her fine form through to this year's event. 

On her return, Naomi said: "I'm excited to come back to Birmingham. I enjoy the challenge of playing on grass and I've had some great matches and results on it, so this year should be fun. British crowds are great to play in front of so I'm looking forward to it."

Defending champion Petra Kvitova, 2016 winner Madison Keys and British No.1 Johanna Konta join Osaka in the line-up, which is set to be one of the strongest in the tournament's 38-year history.

Catch Naomi courtside

Watch world class women's tennis in Birmingham and secure your seat today. Main draw tickets (17-23 June) are available from £20 per person.