Naomi Osaka looking forward to retain Australian Open title

The 22-year-old Japanese tennis star regained some form at the end of last season, winning titles at the Pan Pacific Open and China Open

Defending Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka is looking forward to retain his title after she had a happening season in 2019. The Japanese tennis star became the world number one 2019, she changed her coach twice while also becoming the second-highest-paid female athlete on the planet.

The 22-year-old's victory over Petra Kvitova in Melbourne last year gave her the taste of winning two consecutive Grand Slam titles after winning the 2018 US Open. The Japanese tennis player failed it difficult to cope up with pressure when she became the world number one.

Osaka split with coach Sascha Bajin shortly after her win over Kvitova and in August said she, "hadn't had fun playing tennis" since Melbourne. That same month business magazine Forbes placed her second to only rival Serena Williams in the list of highest-paid female athletes over the previous year.

Following disappointing performances at the remaining Grand Slams, Osaka regained some form towards the end of last season, picking up titles at the Pan Pacific Open and China Open.

In December she moved onto her third coach of the year – Belgian Wim Fissette – and comes into the first Grand Slam of 2020 ranked third in the world and with a new outlook on life.

Naomi Osaka, 2019 Australian Open Women's singles
Naomi Osaka, 2019 Australian Open Women's singles winner YouTube/ Australian Open TV

"I just feel like I'm experiencing so many things in my life and ... and I'm trying to take it all into perspective that these are things that I've never thought I was going to be able to do," Osaka said before this month's Brisbane International.

After withdrawing from last year's WTA Finals with a shoulder injury, Osaka was able to take an extended holiday, going to the Turks and Caicos Islands with her sister Mari.

While rest and relaxation would have been her top priority in the Caribbean, the trip saw her suffer a "near-death experience" while paddleboarding with her sister.

After relinquishing her U.S. citizenship when she turned 22 last October – Japan does not permit dual citizenship for adults – Osaka confirmed she would be representing the hosts at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

With two Grand Slam titles to her name, Osaka will hope to add Olympic gold to her trophy cabinet this year and perhaps start to think about joining Serena Williams and Steffi Graf as the only female players to win all four majors and the Olympics. Before that, however, she must use the Australian Open to prove the difficulties of last season are all behind her and show that she means business in 2020.