Naomi Osaka pulls out of Berlin tournament, organisers confirm

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PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 30: Naomi Osaka of Japan celebrates her victory over Patricia Maria Țig of Romania in the first round of the women’s singles at Roland Garros on May 30, 2021 in Paris, France.
PARIS, FRANCE – MAY 30: Naomi Osaka at Roland Garros on May 30, 2021, in Paris, France.

Naomi Osaka has pulled out of next week’s Berlin WTA grasscourt tournament in the wake of her controversial exit from the French Open, organizers confirmed Monday.

“We have received notification that Naomi Osaka cannot start in Berlin. After consulting her management, she will take a break,” said a spokesman for the Berlin tournament, which starts June 14.

Osaka has not said when she plans to play next, casting doubt on her participation at Wimbledon, which starts on June 28, and the Tokyo Olympics.

The 23-year-old four-time Grand Slam winner has been in the spotlight since withdrawing from Roland Garros after a dispute over her refusal to attend press conferences.

As a result, French tennis officials fined Osaka $15,000 and threatened to axe her from the tournament for not honoring mandatory media commitments, prompting the Japanese star to withdraw.

On Saturday, Osaka, who revealed her ongoing battle with depression and anxiety which she said having to face the media exacerbated, thanked her supporters in a brief message on Instagram.

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