Naomi Osaka may sit out Wimbledon after losing in French Open first round to Amanda Anisimova

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Four-time grand slam champion Naomi Osaka may not travel to Wimbledon after the decision by the sport’s authorities to strip the tournament of ranking points.

Osaka’s comments came after she was knocked out of the French Open in the first round by 27th seed Amanda Anisimova 7-5, 6-4.

Wimbledon last week had its ranking points taken away

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by the men’s ATP and women’s WTA after the grasscourt major opted to exclude players from Russia and Belarus because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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“I would love to go just to get some experience on the grass court, but at the same time, for me, it’s kind of, I don’t want to say pointless, no pun intended, but I’m the type of player that gets motivated by … seeing my ranking go up.”

Osaka has been vocal about prioritising her mental health on the gruelling international tennis tour.

This year marked her return to Roland Garros after she boycotted press conferences at the 2021 tournament, citing their effect on her mental health.

She was fined and ultimately withdrew from the tournament after facing backlash for her decision.

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The removal of ranking points from Wimbledon was met with “deep disappointment” by the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC), which repeated its stance that the ban was the only viable option under British government guidance.

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) also said it would not grant ranking points to Wimbledon this year for junior and wheelchair tennis events.

The AELTC decision to impose the suspension on Russian and Belarusian players at this year’s championships is the first time players have been excluded on grounds of nationality since the immediate post-World War II era, when German and Japanese players were banned.

Reuters/ABC

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