Osaka skips Wimbledon but will compete at Tokyo Olympics

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Naomi Osaka, women’s tennis world number two, has pulled out of Wimbledon as she continues her recovery from the mental health issues that led her to withdraw from the French Open last month.

Osaka’s announcement came after the men’s two-time champion Rafael Nadal said he would skip the third Grand Slam tournament of the season after a gruelling clay court swing of the tour.

While 35-year-old Nadal added he would miss next month’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, Osaka said she would play in the event in her home country.

Osaka was fined 18,000 euros for missing her mandatory post-match press conference at the French Open.

Anxiety

Despite revealing the anxieties that journalists’ questions often brought, she was threatened with expulsion from the French Open and other Grand Slam competitions if she continued to avoid the sessions.

"Naomi won't be playing Wimbledon this year,” said her spokesperson. “She is taking some personal time with friends and family. She will be ready for the Olympics and is excited to play in front of her home fans,"

Wimbledon organisers, the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC), said Osaka would be greatly missed at the 2021 event.

"We completely understand her decision," the AELTC said. "We wish her a happy time with her friends and family and look forward to welcoming her back to Wimbledon next year."

The 23-year-old has never gone further than the third round in her three visits to fabled grass courts in south-west London.

In 2019, she lost in the first round to Yulia Putintseva from Kazakhstan.

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