Leonard Francois, Osaka’s father, was born in Haiti, though the date of his birth, like so many other details about him, is unknown.
Francois’ daughters and the vital role he played in their lives are the focus of much of what is known about him.
Nonetheless, it is known that he used to play tennis when he was considerably younger. He spent some of his life in Japan, where he met Tamaki Osaka, the lady he later married. After a short while, he returned to the United States with his Haitian parents, who spoke no English at all. He only got his kids completely interested in tennis after relocating to Florida, even though he had previously started coaching them in Japan.
6 Unknown Facts About Leonard Francois
Leonard Supported Naomi’s Decision to Not Carry His Last Name
Many people assume that the Osaka sisters don’t use their father’s surname because he was never present in their lives or because they had a strained relationship with him. The fact is that Leonard Francois has a particular relationship with both of his daughters, who credit him with their success.
When his girls opted to take Osaka as their last name because it is not just their mother’s last name but also the name of the town where they were born, he backed them wholeheartedly.
kinda rusty but feels good to be back 🎾💕 I really want to say thank you everyone for all the kind messages, I really appreciate it ❤️ pic.twitter.com/AF0dDukRPE
— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka) November 5, 2021
Leonard Was Greatly Inspired by Richard Williams
After deciding to teach his children tennis, Leonard Francois discovered Richard Williams’ coaching technique and became an avid supporter of it. Richard Williams’ decision to educate his children influenced Leonard’s decision. Leonard, like Richard, preferred to train his daughters Mari and Naomi on clay courts. Richard’s choice to train Serena and Venus in Florida also influenced their decision to relocate.
Leonard Began Training Daughters Early
After seeing the William sisters battle it out at the French Open in 1999, Leonard Francois resolved to teach his two daughters to be tennis professionals. He brought his family to the United States from Japan in 2001, when Naomi was just three years old. In the same year, he began his training in New York.
He went to Florida five years later to guarantee his girls had the finest possible care. Leonard was so concerned about his girls’ education that he opted to homeschool them rather than send them to a public school in the United States. He thought academic education was vital, but he didn’t want it to get in the way of his daughter’s tennis dreams.
Leonard and Tamaki Osaki’s Marriage is Not a Fairytale Marriage
Leonard Francois met Tamaki Osaka in Sapporo, the city of Hokkaido, where they both attended the same university. They met and immediately fell in love. They relocated to Osaka after graduating in quest of better job options. Tamaki and Leonard gave birth to two beautiful girls in Osaka: Mari and Naomi.
Leonard and Tamaki’s marriage, on the other hand, was far from perfect. While they were much in love, Tamaki came from a family that valued racial purity, and when she declared her decision to marry Leonard, she was expelled by her family, who disapproved of their inter-race love. Tamaki went over fifteen years without speaking to her family before reconnecting with them in 2008.
Leonard decided his daughters would represent Japan
Leonard Francois determined early on that his daughters would play tennis, and that instead of representing America or Haiti, they would represent Japan, despite the country’s racial conflicts, which formed their tale.
He chose Japan over America because the American Tennis Association refused to help the girls develop because they were deemed insufficiently talented. This decision made the girls extremely delighted. Osaka would later give up her American citizenship to play for Japan in the future.
Did Leonard Francois annoy her?
Naomi expressed her dissatisfaction with her father following her victory in Beijing. Naomi and her father have a great relationship, so she was joking.
He is, in fact, substantially responsible for everything she has accomplished over the years, as previously indicated. She owes him gratitude and adores him.
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