Naomi Osaka announced Monday that she is withdrawing from the French Open after her decision to boycott the media became a “distraction.”
In a statement released to Twitter, Osaka said her decision to withdraw is to allow people to focus on the tennis at Roland-Garros. She added that her “timing was not ideal and my message could have been clearer” in her refusal to speak to the media and apologized to the “cool journalists” she disappointed.
Osaka also explained that she has suffered “long bouts of depression” since the 2018 US Open, adding that speaking to the media gives her “huge waves of anxiety.” Her announcement of a boycott was partly meant to highlight what she called “outdated” media rules, and she wanted to eventually work with the WTA to work on changes. She concluded by saying she plans to take some time away from the court for the time being.