By: Jerry Humphrey III

After shocking the world by pulling out of the US Open last week Tennis prodigy Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from the Berlin WTA 5000 grass-court tournament. Mental Health was the reason Osaka decided to pull out the tournaments and she wants to keep that her priority.

This all started during the French Open when Osaka decided not to attend a post-match press conference because a negative question was asked towards her by the media before the press conference. For her negligence, the tournament officials fined her 15,000 dollars within hours of the incident.

“Anyone that has seen me at the tournaments will notice that I’m often wearing headphones as that helps dull my social anxiety,” Osaka said via Instagram after the situation. As the reigning US Open and French Open champion, it can be a lot for such a young champion to take everything in and be well prepared to defend her title. At just 23 years old she’s already the highest-paid female athlete and the number two ranked female tennis player in the world.
Osaka wrote to Instagram and said she’s been suffering from depression since the US Open in 2018 and it’s hard for her to cope with that. Mental Health is a very important issue especially in the sports world because a lot of spectators don’t expect star athletes to go through battles.

However, they are regular people just like us and everyone has giants they battle consistently. Athletes such as Dak Prescott, Kevin Love, and Hayden Hurst are all athletes who were vocal about their Mental Health struggles, and with the right help, they were able to flourish in their perspective sports. The Tennis officials and board members need to embrace their superstar with open arms and help her get through this emotional time.

With the Wimbledon tournament at the end of June and the Olympics beginning next month, we would love to see Osaka take the court again and continue to chase history.