4-times Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka on Wednesday mentioned she won’t take questions from the press at this yr’s French Open, saying the character of stories conferences places an undue burden on gamers’ psychological well being.
Gamers may be fined as much as $20,000 for skipping a media convention at Grand Slams and Osaka mentioned she hoped the “appreciable quantity” that she anticipated to be fined would go in direction of a psychological well being charity.
“I am penning this to say I am not going to do any press throughout Roland Garros,” the Japanese world quantity two wrote on Twitter.
“I’ve usually felt that individuals don’t have any regard for athletes psychological well being and this rings true every time I see a press convention or partake in a single.
“We’re usually sat there and requested questions that we have been requested a number of instances earlier than or requested questions that convey doubt into our minds and I am simply not going to topic myself to those that doubt me.”
Anticipating gamers to reply questions after losses amounted to “kicking an individual whereas they’re down”, Osaka added.
Osaka, 23, made headlines earlier this week when sports activities enterprise web site Sportico reported she had earned $55.2 million over the previous 12 months, a document haul for a feminine athlete.
French Open qualifiers are underway with the primary draw set to start out from Sunday at Roland Garros with the ultimate scheduled on June 13.
The claycourt Grand Slam has by no means been a contented looking floor for Osaka, who skipped the occasion final yr amid the COVID-19 pandemic. She has by no means gone previous the third spherical in her 4 appearances.
World governing physique Worldwide Tennis Federation, French tennis federation FFT, which organises the foremost, and the WTA Tour didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark.
A spokeswoman for Japanese automobile producer Nissan Motor, one among Osaka’s lengthy record of sponsors, mentioned it has no remark. Her different sponsors didn’t reply to requests for remark.
Osaka, a former world primary, mentioned the choice was “nothing private” towards the match and famous she had a pleasant relationship with lots of the tour’s journalists. She hoped tournaments would rethink their method.
She later tweeted a video of former Seattle Seahawks operating again Marshawn Lynch famously repeating the road “I am simply right here so I will not get fined”, at a pre-Tremendous Bowl press convention in 2015.
Osaka has prior to now used her platform and appreciable press consideration to focus on problems with police violence and racial inequality.
American Christian Harrison was fined $3,000 by the ATP after refusing to participate in a compulsory on-court interview on the Delray Seaside Open in January amid a dispute over masks carrying.
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