The 24-year-old was set to take on Brazil’s Beatriz Haddad Maia in the second round but withdrew on Thursday, saying her “body won’t let her” compete.
The Japanese player has had a difficult season, pulling out of several tournaments due to injuries and mental health strains. She has fallen to 48 in the WTA rankings after a run of early exits from various events.
Some fans were not happy with Osaka’s withdrawal, with one suggesting that she should retire from the game if she is struggling a lot.
“ATP just retire sis this part-time sh*t isn’t helping your mental health,” said a fan.
Another fan questioned if she was even ‘playing’ tennis at this point.
“Is this playing? what type of playing is this??” a tweet read.
Here are some other fan reactions to Osaka’s withdrawal from the Toray Pan Pacific Open:
“I am really sorry that I am not able to compete today” – Naomi Osaka after withdrawing from Toray Pan Pacific Open
Naomi Osaka won the Toray Pan Pacific Open in 2019.
Naomi Osaka announced her withdrawal from the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo, where she was the defending champion, through a statement she put out via the organizers.
The former No.1 said that it was an honor for her to play in front of her home fans in Tokyo and apologized for not being able to compete.
“I am really sorry that I am not able to compete today. It’s an honor to be able to play at the Toray Pan Pacific Open in front of the amazing fans here in Japan. This has and always will be a special tournament for me and I wish I could have stepped on court today, but my body won’t let me. Thank you for all your support this week and I will see you next year,” she said.
Ahead of the tournament, she mentioned that 2022 has been a year of ‘growth’ for her despite not being the best of her career. She even said that she felt fit and healthy again after her injury-plagued season.
“I think of course the year has been not the best year for me but I think overall I’ve learned a lot about myself, I’m happy to be healthy because in Europe I did injure myself and that was the first injury that took me that long to get healed. I think life is ups and downs and this one was more down than up but overall I’m happy with where I am right now,” she had stated.
With Osaka’s withdrawal, Haddad Maia advances to the quarterfinals, where she will face Veronika Kudermetova.