Naomi Osaka

Naomi Osaka Undecided on Playing Wimbledon After Points Stripped

Naomi Osaka said she hasn't decided whether she will play Wimbledon without ranking points being granted at the tournament

USA Today

Naomi Osaka is unsure if she is going to play at Wimbledon after the grass-court Grand Slam announced ranking points would not be awarded. 

The 24-year-old, who was eliminated from the French Open on Monday after falling to American Amanda Anisimova, said that the feel of the event would be more like an exhibition. 

"The intention of this measure was good, but the execution is all over the place," she said in a press conference after the loss.

"I feel like if I play Wimbledon without points, it's more like an exhibition. I know this isn't true, right? But my brain just like feels that way. Whenever I think like something is like an exhibition, I just can't go at it 100%,” she added.

Osaka, who withdrew from Wimbledon last year to take some “personal time,” said much of her motivation to compete comes from chasing ranking points.

"I didn't even make my decision yet, but I'm leaning more towards not playing given the current circumstances."

The All England Club announced in April that it would not allow Russian and Belarusian players to compete at the 2022 Wimbledon Championships amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis. In response, the ATP, WTA and ITF said they were going to strip rankings from the event due to “discrimination.” 

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Prior to Wimbledon, there will be warm-up tournaments in England that will include ranking points, but Osaka is unsure about playing those events as well.

"I would say the decision is kind of affecting my mentality going into grass. I'm not 100% sure if I'm going to go there," Osaka said.

"I would love to go just to get some experience on the grass court, but at the same time I'm the type of player that gets motivated by seeing my ranking go up."

Osaka, who was ranked No. 1 in the world in 2019, reached the third round of Wimbledon in 2017 and 2018 and is currently ranked No. 36 in the world. 

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