2021 US Open: Osaka Takes Another Break From Tennis After Latest Defeat

Written By Omolagba Oluwayemi

Following her shocking exit from the 2021 US Open women’s singles third round, Naomi Osaka said she’s not sure of when she will play Tennis again.

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Naomi Osaka lost in the third round of the 2021 US Open 5-7, 7-6 (2), 6-4, to Leylah Fernandez, an 18-year-old from Canada who is ranked 73rd and never had been this far in Grand Slam competition.

Naomi Osaka looked over at her agent and said she wanted to tell the world what the two of them had discussed privately in an Arthur Ashe Stadium hallway after her U.S. Open title defense ended with a racket-tossing, composure-missing, lead-evaporating defeat in the third round, with her agent replying: “Sure.”


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Osaka, pausing every so often as her voice got caught on her words and her eyes filled with tears, said Friday night she is thinking about taking another break from tennis “for a while.”

“I feel like for me, recently, when I win, I don’t feel happy, I feel more like a relief. And then when I lose, I feel very sad,” Osaka said at her news conference after the defeat. “I don’t think that’s normal,” she added.

The moderator in charge of the session with reporters attempted to cut things off, but Osaka said she wanted to continue.

“This is very hard to articulate,” she said, resting her left cheek in her hand. “Basically, I feel like I’m kind of at this point where I’m trying to figure out what I want to do, and I honestly don’t know when I’m going to play my next tennis match.”

Crying, she lowered her black visor over her eyes and offered an apology, then patted her palms on both cheeks.

“Yeah,” Osaka added as she rose to leave, “I think I’m going to take a break from playing for a while.”

Read Also: Oldest Grand Slam Tennis Tournament Returns

This was the first Slam tournament for the 23-year-old Osaka since she pulled out of the French Open before the second round to take a mental health break after having announced she would not participate in news conferences in Paris.

Meanwhile…

Another 18-year-old new to this territory surprisingly eliminated a No. 3 seed.

Carlos Alcaraz of Spain edged French Open runner-up Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (2), 0-6, 7-6 (5) to become the youngest man into the fourth round at Flushing Meadows since Michael Chang and Pete Sampras in 1989.

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