- Japanese tennis top tenner Naomi Osaka has explained her reasons behind the decision to withdraw from the ongoing French Open tournament
- The 23-year-old Osaka says it's better that she excuse herself as she doesn't want to be a distraction to the other players taking part in the ongoing French Open
- Osaka previously threatened to avoid media interviews at the Roland Garros, saying the media not empathetic to sports stars
- Along the same lines, the French Open organisers initially fined Osaka $15 000 for her decision to boycott media interviews
Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from the French Open tournament just after swearing to be unavailable for media interviews. Osaka announced her decision on her social media pages and made the announcement that she would excuse herself from the tournament on Monday.
The boycott comes on the back of a bitter fall-out from her decision to avoid all media activity at the Grand Slam event.
Said Osaka on Twitter:
"The best thing for the tournament, the other players and my well-being is that I withdraw so that everyone can get back to focusing on the tennis going on in Paris.
"I never wanted to be a distraction and I accept that my timing was not ideal and my message could have been clearer. The truth is, I have suffered bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018 and I have had a really hard time coping with that."
Threats of disqualification
The world Number 2 was slapped with a fine of $15 000 on Sunday and threatened with disqualification after she refused to carry out a mandatory news conference following her first-round win.
Detrimental effect on mental health
Osaka claimed on the eve of the Roland Garros that such post-match 'inquests' were similar to kicking people when they are down and that they had a detrimental effect on her mental health. She added in a long statement:
"In Paris, I was already feeling vulnerable and anxious so I thought it was better to exercise self-care and skip the press conferences. I announced it pre-emptively because I do feel like the rules are quite outdated in parts and I wanted to highlight that."
"Kicking a person while they're down"
Briefly News reported that that the 23-year-old had penned a hot letter regarding post-match interviews, saying that the media often brings pressure.
This comes ahead of the upcoming Roland Garros tournament in France. The Japanese star said because of mental health issues, she will not be attending press meetings.
Osaka believes that some post-match interviews are little more than kicking a person while they're down.
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