Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka shocked everyone with her last-minute withdrawal from the Australian Open 2023. Initially in the announcement shared by the official Twitter handle the tournament no specific reason was provided. Later the news of the 25-year-old being pregnant made the headlines which gave the fans some reason to cheer for her.
Naomi Osaka was one of the favorites to clinch the title at the peak of the Australian summer. She has been crowned champion at Melbourne Park twice in 2019 and 2021. Osaka’s absence from the tournament will be a major setback for the Australian Open looking to attract a crowd in a bid for a financial overhaul.
In the midst of the pregnancy news and the retirement rumors of Osaka, a video of her during the US Open 2020 has surfaced. In the video, she was talking about the future, how long will she stay after having a kid, and what tennis meant for her among other things.
“Honestly, that’s so far ahead in the future that I haven’t really thought about it but you know if I miss the atmosphere and the fans maybe I do have a kid I might want to come back for one year but just because I love the sport,” Osaka said during the 2020 US Open.
Now the future that she was talking about has already arrived. Fans are relating the video to her impending retirement from the sport in 2024.
Naomi Osaka’s surprise withdrawal fueled her retirement rumors
The unexpected pullout from theAustralian Open by the former World No. 1 did not go down well with her fans. Most of the fans were unforgiving initially and blamed Osaka for focusing on her business ventures more than tennis. There were talks of her impending retirement Of Naomi Osaka from the sport.
But as the news of the four-time Grand Slam winner being pregnant became public the narrative changed instantly. She has been dating rapper Cordae since 2019, and the couple is set to welcome their first child together. With the news, her fans took a sigh of relief at the possibility of her making a comeback to the scene.
Osaka on her part too made it clear that she can not wait to get back on the court.“Love you all infinitely. Sidenote: I don’t think there’s a perfectly correct path to take in life but I always felt that if you move forward with good intentions you’ll find your way eventually,” said Osaka earlier.
If eventually, she makes a return to the court whenever she does how long will she stay remains anybody’s guess.
Abhinavendu Singh is a Tennis Writer at FirstSportz. He has been following this sport since childhood and is a diehard 'Fedal' fan. Though drawn to the sport since 2004, it was Rafael Nadal's win over Swiss maestro Roger Federer in the 2006 French Open final that made him fall in love with the sport. Originally a Nadal supporter, he became a 'Fedal' fanatic after the duo produced a historic game for the ages at 2008 Wimbledon final. An engineer by training, whenever he is not watching tennis or writing about it Abhinavendu is either busy watching crime thrillers, experimenting with ingredients in kitchen or reading non-fiction books.
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