ANDY Murray expressed disappointment about crowds at the China Open tennis, where some of the best players in the world have competed in front of swathes of empty seats. Poor attendances have been in the sporting headlines because of sparse turn-out at the World Athletics Championships in Doha. And at the ongoing China Open in Beijing, the biggest matches have played out to rows of unoccupied seats at the cavernous Diamond Court, the main arena. “I think as the tournament goes on you tend to get better crowds towards the end of the week,” Murray said after his last-16 match. “Last couple of days in terms of atmosphere it’s been not as good as you would like,” added the former number one, 32, who is on the comeback trail from career-saving hip surgery.
The three-time Grand Slam champion praised the tournament as a whole, but said: “I don’t know if I’m complaining about it, but I’d like it to be bigger crowds and nicer atmospheres. “That normally comes as the week goes on,” added the Briton. The China Open did not immediately comment on Murray’s remarks when approached by AFP. Osaka ‘angry relaxed’ after reaching quarters NAOMI Osaka said Thursday that she was “angry relaxed” after the Japanese tennis player set up a potential first meeting with US Open champion Bianca Andreescu in Beijing.
The 21-year-old, the reigning Australian Open champion, won the last 10 games against unseeded American Alison Riske to surge into the last eight at the China Open, 6-4, 6-0. Osaka and Andreescu, two young stars of women’s tennis, will meet if the 19-year-old Canadian wins against American qualifier Jennifer Brady. Osaka has not dropped a set in three matches in the Chinese capital and also did not lose a set on the way to winning her home Pan Pacific Open last month. It is in contrast to the stuttering form the world number four endured after winning the Australian Open at the start of the year.
“I’m relaxed, but I’m a little bit angry, it’s an angry relaxed,” said Osaka, asked what was behind her recent success in Japan and now China. “I know after Australia I was like, ‘I’m going to have fun’. It was not fun, I did not have fun.” The Japanese said she took a week off after her last 16 defeat at the US Open, where teenager Andreescu went on to triumph over Serena Williams in the final. “I was sorting out my thoughts,” said Osaka, adding that she has “self-diagnosed ADHD” because “if I tell myself to relax, I play three-set matches.