Naomi Osaka marks return with a win over Alize Cornet in Melbourne

Having taken a four month break from tennis, Naomi Osaka made her return in Melbourne as she edged out Alize Cornet in the opening round.

Naomi Osaka made her return to the court on Tuesday morning and struggled to a 6-4 3-6 6-3 victory over 31-year-old Alize Cornet.

It was her first match in four months, having not made an appearance on court since the US Open. Osaka took time out to focus on her mental wellbeing, but has returned ready for the Australian Open, where she won last year.

So, as part of her preparation, the 24-year-old Osaka is taking part in the Melbourne Summer Set, where she is ranked the tournament's top seed.

After her opening round win over Cornet, she will now face Maryna Zanevska in the round of 16.

"I really love playing here," Osaka said after the match.

"I love New York, but this might be my favourite slam so it feels really good to always come back here."

It may be one of Osaka's favourite places, but she found it difficult on her return, making 57 unforced errors across the match, including eight double-faults.

Despite struggling with her accuracy at Melbourne Park, Osaka took the opening set and then managed to find an early break in the second, before Cornet fought back to win four straight games and then the set.

The former No.1 rallied in the deciding set though, claiming the first three games before serving out for the win.

She'll now prepare for Wednesday's clash against Zanevska as she builds up momentum for the upcoming Australian Open on January 17.

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