27 September 2023
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Four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka announced on Monday that she is withdrawing from French Open.

In her statement, the 23-year-old said she had suffered long bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018 and had a really hard time coping, which was part of the reason she decided to skip media duties at Roland Garros. She had announced last week that she will not be attending press conferences at the ongoing Grand Slam because they affected her mental health.

The Japanese star had already been fined $15,000 for not honouring media commitments following her opening round win at Roland Garros on Sunday.

All four Grand Slams – the French, Australian and US Opens as well as Wimbledon – issued a joint statement on Sunday, warning of a default or potential suspension from future Majors if she does not relent from her boycott of the press.

Here’s the statement published by Osaka:

Hey everyone, this isn’t a situation I ever imagined or intended when I posted a few days ago. I think now 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…

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Abdul Gh Lone