Champion in 2019 when the tournament was temporarily held in Osaka, the former No.1 advanced to the second round this year after Daria Saville was forced to retire in the first round with a knee injury .
Osaka’s withdrawal was a difficult turn for the four-time champion. Ahead of the tournament, Osaka told reporters she felt fit and healthy again after her injury-plagued season.
“I think of course it hasn’t been the best year for me, but I think overall I learned a lot about myself,” Osaka told reporters ahead of the tournament.
“I’m happy to be healthy because in Europe I got injured and it’s the first time it took me so long to heal.
“I think life is up and down and this one was more down than up, but overall I’m happy with where I am right now.”