Four-time Grand Slam winner Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from the remaining Roland Garros tournament following the controversy over her media boycott, citing her mental health as the reason behind her decision. The Japanese Tennis star confirmed her decision late on Monday.
The development occurs just a day after she was levied with a fine of $15,000 by the French Open for not participating in the post-match news conference after her first match at the tournament. She also received a warning from the body of the four Grand Slams about a possible expulsion from the Grand Slams if she kept on missing press conferences.
The 23-year-old came under the spotlight when she revealed her plans of not entertaining the media at the Roland Garros on account of mental health. However, despite her efforts of bringing in the message she intended to display, the pressure from the Grand Slam organizers eventually led her to withdraw from the French Open.
World number 2 took to social mediato reveal about her long struggle with mental health, suffering from “long bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018,” and suggested this the reason behind her decision of withdrawal. Stuart Duguid, the 23-year-old’s agent, confirmed in an email to the Associated Press that the Japanese international was pulling out before her second-round match at the clay-court tournament in Paris.
— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka) May 31, 2021
Commenting on the latest development in the Roland Garros, Gilles Moretton, French Tennis Federation president, said,“The outcome of Naomi withdrawing from Roland-Garros is unfortunate. We wish her the best and quickest possible recovery, and we look forward to having Naomi at our Tournament next year,” adding that the Tennis Associations are “very committed to all athletes’ well-being” of the players.
Naomi Osaka sailed through the first round of the Roland Garros defeating Patricia Maria Tig 6-4, 7-6(4). However, now with the world number 2’s withdrawal, the fate of the second round of the French Open between Osaka and Romania’s Ana Bogdan still remains to be decided. Bogdan will most likely move on to the next round after Osaka’s withdrawal.