According to the Tennis Channel broadcast, during a stoppage of play, Osaka asked the referee to use the microphone to address the crowd, but the referee rejected the request. It is not clear if the spectator has been identified and removed from the scene.
Osaka would go on to lose in straight sets 6-0 6-4.
Serena, 19, won the final, but did not play at Indian Wells for 14 years.
Venus Williams said in a press conference at her next tournament that she “heard what her father heard”.
Richard Williams told USA Today about some of the abuse he faced: “I struggled to hold back my tears. I think Indian Wells has put America to shame.”
After the game, a choked Osaka addressed the crowd, referring to the 2001 incident.
“To be honest, I’ve been interviewed before,” Osaka said. “I didn’t really care.
But I saw a video here of Venus and Serena (Williams) being disturbed here and if you’ve never seen it you should check it out. I don’t know why, but it went into my head and was replayed a lot.”
Before leaving the court, Osaka thanked the crowd and offered her congratulations to Kudermetova.
DailyExpertNews has contacted the tournament for comment and whether the spectator has been identified.
‘Crying for hours in the Indian Wells locker room’
Prior to her return to Indian Wells in 2015, Serena Williams said the experience 14 years earlier had left her feeling “like I’d lost the greatest game ever”.
“It was hard for me to forget crying for hours in the Indian Wells locker room after I won in 2001,” she told Time.com in February 2015.
“Drive back to Los Angeles feeling like I’d lost the greatest game ever – not just a tennis match but a bigger fight for equality.
“Emotionally it seemed easier to stay away. There are people who say I should never go back…I’m just following my heart on this point.”
Williams advanced to the semifinals on her return to the tournament, but had to withdraw before the match due to a knee injury.