A Naomi Osaka Barbie doll

A Naomi Osaka Barbie doll

Agency Reports

Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka now has her own line of Barbie dolls. The dolls were unveiled Monday.

The 23-year-old world No. 2 tennis player became a part of Mattel Inc’s push to make its iconic toy line more diverse with dolls based on different role models and professions.

“It’s such an honour to be a part of the Barbie Role Model series, and to remind young girls that they can make a difference in the world”, Osaka said in a statement.

“I want young girls everywhere to feel empowered to dream big,” she added.

Osaka who now has four Grand Slams grew up idolizing 23-times Grand Slam champion Serena Williams.

She has used her position to call attention to issues of police violence and racial inequality.

Mattel’s tie-up with Osaka is the latest example of brands becoming more comfortable with taking a stand on social issues and banking on partnerships with female athletes to pull in new customers.

Mattel also has Barbie dolls modelled on U.S. soccer player Alex Morgan and Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad.

“Barbie is committed to celebrating real-life role models… remarkable women who are breaking boundaries and inspiring the next generation,” Mattel said in a statement.

Mattel unveiled an Osaka doll sporting a Nike tennis outfit and a racket.

Osaka did not compete in the Wimbledon championships for personal reasons, following her withdrawal from the French Open for a mental health break.

However, she will be competing in the Tokyo Olympics later this month.