Tennis leaders promise to offer Naomi Osaka ‘support and assistance’ about mental health concerns

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A day after tennis star Naomi Osaka withdrew from the French Open, the leaders of the four Grand Slam tournaments responded with a statement on Tuesday promising to address her concerns about mental health.

The four tennis administrators from the French Open, Wimbledon, U.S. Open and Australian Open threatened to disqualify and/or suspend Osaka on Sunday if she continued to skip post-match press conferences, but two days later they put out a pledge offering support and assistance to the four-time major champion.

“On behalf of the Grand Slams, we wish to offer Naomi Osaka our support and assistance in any way possible as she takes time away from the court. She is an exceptional athlete and we look forward to her return as soon as she deems appropriate,” the statement read. “Mental health is a very challenging issue, which deserves our utmost attention. It is both complex and personal, as what affects one individual does not necessarily affect another.

“We commend Naomi for sharing in her own words the pressures and anxieties she is feeling and we empathize with the unique pressures tennis players may face.”

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