July 31, 2021

after the silence, Naomi Osaka opts for withdrawal

She calls for “To refocus on tennis”. The day after the joint press release of the four Grand Slam tournaments threatening her with “New sanctions, including exclusion from the tournament” after his refusal to “To comply with its contractual media obligations”, the Japanese Naomi Osaka took Roland-Garros from behind on Monday, May 31.

Shortly before 8 p.m., the young athlete (23) posted a long message on social networks, announcing that she was withdrawing from the Paris tournament and “A certain time of the courts”. After her victory in the first round on Sunday, she was due to play her second round on Wednesday.

“The best thing for Roland-Garros, the other players and my well-being is that I forfeit, so that everyone can refocus on tennis”, wrote world number two. It was her second message on social networks in less than a week, in a more peaceful tone than the first, which, however, aimed at protecting her preventively, had triggered lightning.

Naomi Osaka challenged racial prejudice

“I have often felt that people have no respect for the mental health of athletes and it resonates every time I watch or take part in a press conference., had expressed Naomi Osaka, Wednesday. If tournament organizers think they can say go to a press conference or you will be fined by continuing to ignore the sanity of athletes, the soul of their industry, then better laugh at it. “

Despite a mask against the Covid-19 printed with a facetious smile when he entered the Philippe-Chatrier court during his first lap, not many people laughed at his decision to dodge the press conferences of ‘post-match, obligatory meetings of the circuits WTA (female) and ATP (male).

Because Naomi Osaka is not one player among others. Highest-paid athlete on the planet, the four-time winner of Grand Slam tournaments (US Open 2018 and 2020, Australian Open 2019 and 2021) has been the star that women’s tennis has been looking for since Serena Williams slowly took the slope descending. Even if it means undergoing – and putting oneself – insane pressure since her first good results, before the age of 20. And sometimes far from the tennis courts.

Métis of Haitian origin through her father, Naomi Osaka has shaken up racial prejudices in Japan, where the notion of ethnic homogeneity remains significant. Since her commitment to minority rights following the Black Lives Matter movement (“black lives matter”), she has attracted even more attention.

You have 64.45% of this article left to read. The rest is for subscribers only.