Naomi Osaka introduced she was withdrawing from the French Open on Monday after she was threatened with disqualification for boycotting media duties, whereas on court docket, Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Iga Swiatek all reached the second spherical.
Japanese star Osaka, a four-time Grand Slam champion, mentioned earlier than the event that she wouldn’t attend press conferences to guard her psychological well being, saying the normal post-match inquests are like “kicking folks once they’re down”.
She refused to talk to the media after her first-round victory on Sunday.
The organisers of the 4 main tournaments — the Australian, French and US Opens in addition to Wimbledon — responded by fining the world quantity two $15,000 and threatening her with additional sanctions, together with defaulting her from Roland Garros.
However the 23-year-old mentioned she has suffered from despair since profitable her first Slam within the notorious US Open closing three years in the past in opposition to Serena Williams, and pulled out of the occasion.
“One of the best factor for the event, the opposite gamers and my well-being is that I withdraw so that everybody can get again to specializing in the tennis occurring in Paris,” Osaka wrote in a press release on Twitter.
“The reality is that I’ve suffered lengthy bouts of despair for the reason that US Open in 2018 and I’ve had a very onerous time dealing with that.”
Osaka is certainly one of tennis’ greatest stars and the world’s highest-earning feminine athlete.
Federer impresses on return
On Courtroom Philippe Chatrier, Federer kicked off solely his second French Open marketing campaign in six years with a formidable dismissal of Denis Istomin.
The 39-year-old Federer, degree with Rafael Nadal on 20 Grand Slam singles titles, noticed off Uzbek Istomin 6-2, 6-4, 6-3.
Federer arrived at Roland Garros having performed solely three matches since his Australian Open semi-final loss to Novak Djokovic final 12 months, earlier than the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
The Swiss nice misplaced to Pablo Andujar in his first clay-court outing of the season earlier this month in Geneva, however struck 48 winners as he raced to victory over Istomin.
He had been eager to minimize any ideas that he can add to his 2009 Roland Garros title within the run-up to the event, however was extra optimistic after his win.
“For me coming again after many months or over a 12 months of rehab, the sunshine on the finish of the tunnel or the measuring stick was at all times can I come again to a great degree in opposition to good gamers,” mentioned Federer.
“I hope Wimbledon goes to be that place. Possibly there’s going to be even one thing right here in Paris. We’ll see.”
He’ll subsequent face 2014 US Open winner Marin Cilic.
Serena, Swiatek by means of
Afterward Monday, Serena Williams survived a quick scare in opposition to Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu to win 7-6 (8/6), 6-2 within the first ever official French Open night time match.
The 39-year-old, nonetheless one behind Margaret Courtroom’s all-time document of 24 Grand Slam singles titles, saved two set factors within the first-set tie-break however dominated from then on.
“It wasn’t simple in that first set. I used to be up and I felt like I had some alternatives,” mentioned Williams, who will subsequent face Begu’s compatriot Mihaela Buzarnescu.
The match below the lights on Courtroom Philippe Chatrier was performed behind closed doorways attributable to a 9pm curfew imposed by the French authorities attributable to Covid-19.
Defending champion Swiatek, celebrating her twentieth birthday, noticed off her good good friend Kaja Juvan 6-0, 7-5 on Courtroom Philippe Chatrier.
Swiatek, who turned the primary Grand Slam singles title winner from Poland final October, hit 22 winners in a formidable opening to her bid for a second straight Roland Garros triumph.
“I attempted to place it behind me (being defending champion) and form of use it in a optimistic means as a result of I simply know that I am feeling good right here,” mentioned the eighth seed.
Medvedev ends depressing run
Daniil Medvedev, who had misplaced within the first spherical in all of his 4 earlier appearances within the event, put his poor clay-court kind behind him by beating the damaging Alexander Bublik 6-3, 6-3, 7-5.
The 2-time Grand Slam runner-up was too robust for Kazakh Bublik, organising a second-round tie in opposition to US participant Tommy Paul.
“It was a great match and I have been coaching very well,” mentioned second seed Medvedev.
The Russian is bidding to reap the benefits of being within the reverse half of the draw to 13-time champion Nadal, Djokovic and Federer, whereas fourth seed Dominic Thiem was knocked out on Sunday.
Elsewhere, sixth seed Bianca Andreescu was dumped out after shedding a marathon first-round match with Slovenia’s world quantity 85 Tamara Zidansek 6-7 (1/7), 7-6 (7/2), 9-7.
Fourth seed Sofia Kenin, final 12 months’s shedding finalist, did battle by means of, although, edging out 2017 champion Jelena Ostapenko 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.