The Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from the 2021 Wimbledon tournament, citing her struggle with depression and anxiety as the cause.
Osaka, who withdrew from the French Open after the first round because of a media blockade is planning to play at the Tokyo Olympics, which is her home country.
The four-time Grand Slam champion’s agent disclosed that the 23-year-old will spend time with friends and family during Wimbledon but will be ready for the Olympics.
Meanwhile, the Organizers of Wimbledon said on Wednesday that the 23-year-old is expected to take part in the championships, which will start on June 28.
“At this point in time she’s entered into the championships and we haven’t received confirmation that she won’t compete,” All England Club chief executive Sally Bolton said.
The Four-time Grand Slam champion withdrew from the French Open and was fined $15,000 and threatened with disqualification from Roland Garros after she refused to honour mandatory media commitments.
Osaka lost in the third round of Wimbledon in 2017 and 2018 and bowed out in the first round in 2019. Last year’s tournament was canceled due to coronavirus.
Earlier, two-time Wimbledon champion Rafael Nadal also announced he would be skipping this year’s tournament. The 20-time Grand Slam winner said he took the decision in order to prolong his career.
“The fact that there have only been two weeks between Roland Garros and Wimbledon didn’t make it easier on my body to recuperate after the always demanding clay-court season,” Nadal revealed in a Twitter post on Wednesday.
“It’s never an easy decision but after listening to my body and discussing it with my team I understand that it is the right decision.
“The goal is to prolong my career and continue to do what makes me happy,” he added.