The second ranked women’s tennis player Naomi Osaka has decided to withdraw from the next major tournament to take place at Wimbledon. This comes after she decided to withdraw from the French Open after winning her first match. Over the fact that the tournament organizers were looking to fine 15k her for not showing up to a mandatory press conference.
Osaka had already warned tournament authorities that she wanted to be exempt from talking to the press. Her decision sparked a worldwide debate on the issue. Today she makes her withdrawal from Wimbledon official.
This time around Noami herself did not put out a public statement or social media post. Her agent, Stuart Duguid, was the one in charge of delivering the news. In a statement he mentioned,
“Naomi won’t be playing Wimbledon this year. She is taking some personal time with friends and family,”
Duguid did not go into detail about Naomi’s present condition or what she’s doing to cope with her situation. He did mention that Osaka aims to be ready for the Olympic games. Which seems a little counterintuitive.
In a statement that Naomi put out following her withdrawal from the French Open a couple of weeks ago she talked about being a very introvertive person. She also mentioned that’s one of the main reasons she walked around with her headphones on all the time.
She also added that she had been dealing with depression since The US Open in 2018. Her decision to drop out of both grand slam tournaments is certainly a valid one. Returning to the Olympics though is an odd decision at best! Here is why!
Her team is probably already looking for ways to protect her from the press if they are so confident that she’s going to play in the Olympics. They may be thinking that since there are so many events going on it’s going to be easier for her to slip through the cracks and avoid the press.
That being said, she is Japanese by birth and will be representing her country in the games. Before all of this happened she was certainly one of the standout stars of Japan. Looking at it that way it may not be the wisest choice to have her compete. As local and foreign press could be literally stalking her at every corner.
On a positive note, Osaka has the support of most of the sports world. Venus Williams who had been an idol of Osaka made a public comment on Instagram that said, “So proud of you. Take care of yourself and see you back winning soon!”
Venus also offered up some advice on how to deal with the press. She mentioned what worked for her was remembering that she was better at tennis than most of the people criticizing her in the first place.
She, of course, picked up some haters too! Piers Morgan was one of the voices that criticized Osaka’s decision a couple of weeks back. Even comparing her to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle!