Right now, 19-year-old Naomi Osaka is the biggest rising star in women’s tennis. And while she’s awfully good at crunching people from behind the baseline, she’s also great at talking about her love for Overwatch and games in press conferences.
The Japanese star opened up about her Overwatch fandom recently in an interview with GQ. On practice days, Osaka spends about the same amount of playing Blizzard’s hero shooter with her sister as she does training, if not more.
Then she goes home and plays four, sometimes five hours of video games—mostly Overwatch with her older sister Mari … There are more offensive types with a plethora of sci-fi weaponry, it being a video game and all. But Osaka prefers the defensive characters – “healers,” who support their teammates with medical aid, and “tanks,” who absorb bullets like a human shield.
It’s strange in a sense, because people’s personalities tend to come out in the way they play games. Osaka is aggressive on the court, relying on her strong forehand and backhand from behind the baseline to pummel opponents and backing it up with a 200km/hr serve.
That said, Osaka the tennis player is a completely different kettle of fish to Osaka the person. Which often comes out during press conferences in amusing ways:
Honestly, I could watch videos of Osaka describing Netflix series all day. Also, skip to 4:12. I promise, it’s worth it.
But it’s not the first time Osaka has talked about Overwatch, saying previously that she played Orisa, Symmetra and Soldier, adding that she plays on a Mac and was playing EQ Worlds when she couldn’t play Overwatch. In her chat with GQ, however, Osaka clarified that she prefers tanks and healers because her virtual aim isn’t the sharpest.
“Like, I’m not that great at attacking … my aim is not that amazing, so I’d just rather be a shield or something,” Osaka said.
Her tastes don’t end at Overwatch, though. In a recent interview following her first round win at Roland Garros for the French Open, the hosts asked: did you bring your PS4 to Europe with you?
“Yeah,” Osaka confirmed, adding that she brought Skyrim along as well.
“That’s not goofy,” one of the hosts quipped.
What a legend.