Naomi Osaka announced she withdrew from the French Open to prioritize her mental health on Monday. This comes one day after she was fined $15,000 by tennis officials for saying she would not do media interviews during the tournament.
Osaka said in a statement that she had "suffered long bouts of depression" since defeating Serena Williams in the 2018 U.S. Open and struggled to cope with it. "I never wanted to be a distraction and I accept that my timing was not ideal and my message could have been clearer," Osaka said.
"More importantly I would never trivialize mental health or use the term lightly."
Osaka also said that she deals with social anxiety when speaking to the media and that led to her wanting to exercise better self-care and skip the press conferences.
"I'm going to take some time away from the court now, but when the time is right I really want to work with the Tour to discuss ways we can make things better for the players, press and fans," Osaka said.
Osaka, 23, won the Australian Open in February for her fourth Grand Slam tournament victory.