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Serena Williams reacts as Osaka withdraws from French Open

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Serena Williams reacts as Osaka withdraws from French Open


US tennis star, Serena Williams, has said she wishes she could give Naomi Osaka “a hug”, after she withdrew from the ongoing French Open.

Osaka had refused to take part in media duties – press conferences or interviews – and was threatened with disqualification.

Serena Williams reacts as Osaka withdraws from French Open

The 23-year-old was also threatened with a ban from future tournaments if she did not reconsider.

Osaka, who is the world No 2 pulled out, before opening up about her struggles with depression dating back to her first Slam title in 2018, when talking to the media triggered anxiety.

Serena found out about Osaka’s decision, after winning her first-round match, where she saw off Irina-Camelia Begu in straight-sets.

“Honestly I just found out before I walked into the press conference, so that’s the extent of it right now for me,” said Williams, who is pursuing a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title in Paris.

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