Naomi Osaka was well-beaten by an inspired Maria Sakkari in Miami and says it shows she needs to learn how to find a way to win when not at her best.
Osaka has looked almost unbeatable lately, winning 23 straight matches before this one.
She was abject in the first set, though, being bageled in just 20 minutes, and couldn’t hit back in the second despite being a break up.
And that, she says, is an experience she must learn from if she is going to fulfil all of her obvious potential.
“I feel like even if you’re not playing great you should still find ways to win. I’m trying to find ways to do that,” Osaka said.
“Hopefully, I don’t lose like this a couple more times, but I think the more times that stuff like this happens, the more I’ll learn from it.”
Osaka went into the match saying she had hopes of regaining the world number one spot, and she believes she may have unwittingly put herself under too much pressure.
“It’s hard to say, but I do think like the last time I was in this seat I wasn’t really thinking at all about rankings, but someone asked me that question, so then I did start to ponder about it a lot,” said Osaka.
“So maybe unwillingly that put pressure on myself. But I feel like even if it did, I should be able to rise above that.”
For more exclusive content from Tennisbuzz, including news, features, trivia, promotions and more, please be sure to sign up for our newsletter below or via our home page.
Why not test your tennis knowledge by tackling one of our fiendish quizzes too?