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Naomi Osaka inspires Japanese comic character

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Naomi Osaka inspires Japanese comic character
Naomi Osaka will appear as a cartoon in a comic in a Dec. 28 edition of the Japanese magazine Nakayoshi. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 30 (UPI) -- Naomi Osaka -- the world's No. 3 tennis player -- serves as the inspiration for a new manga character next month in a Japanese comic book aimed at teenage women, the publishers said.

The character -- called Unrivaled Naomi Tenka-ichi -- debuts on Dec. 28 in Nakayoshi magazine. Tenka-ichi means world No. 1 in Japanese.

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Osaka shared a photo of her cartoon depiction Saturday on social media. The manga character features pink and purple hair, an orange visor, a purple tennis racket and a green shirt.

"Growing up reading manga/watching anime was something that bonded me and my sister immensely so this is really exciting for both of us," Osaka tweeted.

The 23-year-old tennis star was born in Osaka, Japan, and moved to the United States when she was 3. Her older sister, Mari, helped to develop Naomi's manga character.

Osaka -- the world's highest-paid female athlete -- beat Victoria Azarenka in three sets to win the 2020 U.S. Open on Sept. 12 in Flushing, N.Y. The former world No. 1 also won the 2018 U.S. Open and 2019 Australian Open.

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