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Tennis superstar Naomi Osaka withdrew from the French Open after she was fined $15,000 and threatened with disqualification for refusing to take part in a press conferences.

The 23-year-old tennis champ, who plays for Japan, was a no-show during her post-match press conference on Sunday, May 30, after defeating Romania's Patricia Maria Tig.

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Tournament officials at Roland Garros threatened Naomi and warned her that higher fines and a possible suspension could be issued if she refused to speak to the press.

Osaka made headlines last week when she issued a statement saying she would skip post-match press conferences at the French Open, citing mental health concerns.

"I've often felt that people have no regard for athletes mental health and this rings very true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one.

"We're often sat there and asked questions that we've been asked multiple times before or asked questions that bring doubt into our minds and I'm just not going to subject myself to people that doubt me."

And in an email to French Open officials Naomi insisted her actions are "100 percent nothing against the French Open or even the press members themselves."

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In a statement posted on social media on Sunday, the world's No. 2 women's tennis player wrote:

"Hey everyone, this isn't a situation I ever imagined or intended when I posted a few days ago. I think now the best thing for the tournament, the other players and my well-being is that I withdraw so that everyone can get back to focusing on the tennis going on in Paris.

"I never wanted to be a distraction and I accept that my timing was not ideal and my message could have been clearer. More importantly I would never trivialize mental health or use the term lightly. The truth is that I have suffered long bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018 and I have had a really hard time coping with that."

Tournament bosses released a statement that read: "We have advised Naomi Osaka that should she continue to ignore her media obligations, she would be exposing herself to possible further code of conduct infringement consequences."

Officials said "repeat violations" could result in "tougher sanctions including default from the tournament and the trigger of a major offense investigation that could lead to more substantial fines and future Grand Slam suspensions."

Naomi was scheduled to play against Romania's Ana Bogdan during the French Open on Wednesday.

Twitter

Naomi Osaka plans to skip press conferences at the upcoming French Open, citing mental health of the athletes.

In a lengthy social media post, Naomi said some sports reporters disregard the mental health of players after a tough loss.

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Naomi said she will skip press conferences and pay the hefty fines ($20,000), which she hopes will go towards a mental health charity.

"Hey everyone -

Hope you're all doing well, I'm writing this to say I'm not going to do any press during Roland Garros. I've often felt that people have no regard for athletes mental health and this rings true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one.

We're often sat there and asked questions that we've been asked multiple times before or asked questions that bring doubt into our minds and I'm just not going to subject myself to people that doubt me. I've watched many clips of athletes breaking down after a loss in the press room and I know you have as well.

I believe that whole situation is kicking a person while they're down and I don't understand the reasoning behind it. Me not doing press is nothing personal to the tournament and a couple journalists have interviewed me since I was young so I have a friendly relationship with most of them.

However, if the organizations think that they can just keep saying, 'do press or you're gonna be fined,' and continue to ignore the mental health of the athletes that are the centerpiece of their cooperation then I just gotta laugh.

Anyways, I hope the considerable amount that I get fined for this will go towards a mental health charity.
xoxo."

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