These two played in Australia, and Garcia was able to overpower Osaka in a pretty close match score-wise. The quality of play was quite a bit apart, as the Frenchman never really faced any problems.
She did face plenty of problems at the WTA 1000 event in Doha, but it mostly happened as the match went on. Early on, Osaka struggled to find a really good rhythm, and Garcia was able to break her serve.
The Japanese player settled after that but struggled to create too much pressure on her opponent. Eventually, it worked out at 5-4 for Garcia when the French player served for the set.
Osaka broke her, took a 6-5 lead, and then broke her once more to finish the opening set 7-5. She found a really solid level from the baseline, hitting aggressively, and served really well to keep Garcia away from any chances.
It was by far the best level we saw from her and a really good indicator that she's slowly starting to turn the corner. She was quite bouncy around the court, which is good to see.
The second set opened with both players being able to hold serve. Osaka continued playing aggressive tennis as both looked to end rallies quickly. The serving was especially good for Osaka at times, though not always.
Sometimes, she would force it a bit too much, causing her to throw her racquet once after committing a double fault. It was clear that she was desperate to win the match, especially in light of recent comments made.
She would be able to keep her level high, though, and eventually worked her way to a break point, which was a match point. She converted it to seal the win 7-5, 6-4.