Friday, January 28

Naomi Osaka says Michelle Obama and Djokovic offered support after the French Open | Naomi osaka


Naomi Osaka says former first lady Michelle Obama, Novak Djokovic, Meghan Markle and NBA star Stephen Curry were among those who reached out to offer support after she pulled out of the French Open to take a mental health break. .

In an essay that appears in Time olympic preview issue, and it will go on sale in print Friday, Osaka, a four-time Grand Slam champion, writes that she hopes “that we can enact measures to protect athletes, especially the frail,” and suggests that they are sometimes allowed to skip. the obligations of the media without punishment.

“There may be times for any of us where we are dealing with problems behind the scenes,” Osaka said. “Each of us, as human beings, is going through something on some level.”

She said before the French Open started that she would not speak to the media during that tournament, saying the interactions were sometimes awkward and would create doubts for her on the court. Following her first round victory in Paris, Osaka was fined $ 15,000 for skipping her mandatory press conference and threatened by all four Grand Slam tournaments with disqualification or suspension if she continued to avoid the media.

Osaka, 23, later withdrew from that tournament, saying she deals with anxiety before press conferences and has experienced bouts of depression in recent years.

“Believe it or not, I am an introvert by nature and do not court the limelight,” she wrote for Time. “I always try to push myself to stand up for what I think is right, but that often comes at the cost of great anxiety.”

Osaka has not played in a tournament since Paris, and also missed out on Wimbledon, which ends on Sunday. He will compete again in the Tokyo Olympics, which open on July 23, and where he will represent his native Japan.

“It has become apparent to me that literally everyone suffers from mental health problems or knows someone who does,” Osaka wrote in her essay, adding later: “I hope people can relate and understand that they are good not to be “. It’s okay, and it’s okay to talk about it. “

Fast guide

Roundup: Leo Borg out of men’s event ahead of ATP Tour arc

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It’s been a few decades since Björn Borg walked upright on these courts, the Swede followed by hordes of young fans in a way that would be impossible in these safer days. Yesterday, however, photographers were on the lookout for the great man, as his son, Leo, continued his search in the juveniles.

Unfortunately for the snappers, there was no sign of Björn. Unfortunately for Leo, he was easily beaten 6-1, 6-2 by Petr Vojtech of the Czech Republic. The 18-year-old Borg, who is just beginning to transition to the senior tour, reportedly suffered a leg injury, which didn’t help at all.

However, the Borg name goes a long way and, fitness permitting, the teenager will soon make his first forays on the ATP Tour. Next week he will try to qualify for the Nordea Open at home in Bastad; Two weeks later, he will play in the Challenger Tour event in Poznan, Poland, having received a wild card in the main draw.

There was disappointment for Joe Salisbury, the Briton lost his men’s doubles semifinal to Rajeev Ram as they were defeated 7-6 (6), 6-3, 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5) by the No. 1 Seeds, Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic from Croatia.

Jordanne Whiley scored an excellent victory in the women’s individual wheelchair event, beating 2019 champion Aniek van Koot of the Netherlands, 6-2, 6-0. “I was kind of fed up with losing in the first round of Grand Slams,” she said. Whiley faces top seed Diede de Groot in the semi-finals today.

And 18-year-old British Alicia Dudeney showed that there is more talent on the women’s side, as she won back-to-back matches to reach the women’s singles quarter-finals. Simon Cambers

Thank you for your comments.

He said the support of the public and people who had experienced fame for themselves had helped.

“I want to thank everyone who supported me,” he wrote. “There are too many to name, but I want to start with my family and friends, who have been incredible. There is nothing more important than those relationships. I also want to thank those in the public eye who have supported, encouraged, and offered such kind words. Michelle Obama, Michael Phelps, Steph Curry, Novak Djokovic, Meghan Markle, to name a few. “

On the subject of press conferences, Osaka said he believes “the format itself is outdated and in need of a major update.”

He also proposed giving tennis players “a small number of ‘sick days’ per year, in which they are exempted from their press commitments without having to reveal their personal reasons. I think this would bring sport closer to the rest of society ”.


www.theguardian.com

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