Earlier this week Naomi Osaka took to social media to announce that she would not be participating in any press conferences during the French Open for mental health reasons. In her statement, she said, “I’ve often felt like people have no regard for athletes’ mental health and this rings very true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one.”
On Sunday she was fined $15,000 after she did not participate in a mandatory press conference following her first-round win at the French Open.
According to ESPN, the Grand Slam tournaments, which include Wimbledon, the US Open, the Australian Open, and the French Open, released a statement and said that they spoke with Naomi after her statement and said that they reminded her of the consequences stated in the 2021 rulebook should she opt-out.
They said, “As might be expected, repeat violations attract tougher sanctions including default from the tournament (Code of Conduct Article III T.) and the trigger of a major offence investigation that could lead to more substantial fines and future Grand Slam suspensions (Code of Conduct article IV A.3.).”
The statement continued, “We want to underline that rules are in place to ensure all players are treated exactly the same, no matter their stature, beliefs or achievement. As a sport, there is nothing more important than ensuring no player has an unfair advantage over another, which unfortunately is the case in this situation if one player refuses to dedicate time to participate in media commitments while the others all honor their commitments.”
Following the news of the $15k fine and said, “Anger is a lack of understanding. change makes people uncomfortable.”
anger is a lack of understanding. change makes people uncomfortable.
— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka) May 30, 2021
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