World No.2 Naomi Osaka who withdrew from the recently concluded French Open citing mental issues is reportedly going to play the upcoming Wimbledon Championships.
At the moment, the Japanese tennis star has not given any potential verdict about any possible withdrawal from Wimbledon. The All England Club chief executive Sally Bolton said as things stand Osaka would be at the championships, which will commence from June 28.
“We’ve reached out to her team, we haven’t spoken to Naomi herself. At this point in time she’s entered into the championships and we haven’t received confirmation that she won’t compete,” Bolton told AFP.
Tournament director Jamie Baker said he had told Osaka’s entourage that the phone lines were always open to discuss any issues that might arise. “I had the conversation with her team. It’s absolutely clear that we’re here, we’re completely open for any discussions when they want to have that. Hopefully it goes without saying that we want the best players competing here no matter what.”
Osaka has been making regular headlines due to her mental issues
The four-time Grand Slam winner has hogged the limelight from the time she refused to attend the mandatory press conference in Paris, ahead of the French Open. She was even penalized with a fine of $15,000. Later, Osaka withdrew from the tournament, citing mental issues.
While many former and current players have come in support of the defending Australian Open Champion, some have also been critical of her shocking stance. Recently, legendary Chris Evert too opined on Osaka’s struggle and even suggested the beleaguered player to seek professional help.
“I just hope she takes the time that she needs to get away to be in a safe place, a safe space, to have good people around her. She needs professionals to help her figure it out, the dilemma that she’s in,” Evert told Reuters.
Currently, Osaka is not playing any warm-up tournament on grass ahead of Wimbledon. Therefore, it remains to be seen how she manages to get ready for the most prestigious tournament of the year. It is also not to be forgotten that Osaka has never made it past the third round at Wimbledon.