Naomi Osaka Covers Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2021

Sports Illustrated announced on Monday the three individuals who would grace the cover of the 2021 Swimsuit edition.

Tennis star Naomi Osaka, rapper Megan Thee Stallion and Leyna Bloom all have been chosen as cover models for this year’s edition.

According to <a href=”https://swimsuit.si.com/swimlife/meet-your-cover-models-2021-mts-naomi-leyna” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>SI Swimsuit</a>, “The three were photographed separately in locations across the U.S. from Florida to California. The result is three separate history-making covers showcasing three groundbreaking women.”

“If there’s one thing that our cover models have in common, it’s that they don’t have one thing in common. They look different, have different upbringings, have different passions and inspirations. But each is a reminder that beauty comes in many forms,” Sports Illustrated Swimsuit editor-in-chief MJ Day explained.

Osaka, 23, is an established star in the tennis world. She has won four Grand Slam titles in her career, and will be heading to Tokyo to compete in the Olympics.

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She was listed among the 2020 Sports Illustrated Sportspersons of the Year for her activism, and now earns the distinction of being the first female Black athlete to grace an SI Swimsuit cover.

“What drew us to Naomi was her passion, strength and power geared toward consistently breaking barriers when it comes to equality, social justice and mental health. She is wholeheartedly dedicated to achieving the impossible and has succeeded time and again. We are so honored to have one of the fiercest female trailblazers in history as one of our 2021 covers,” Day said.