Bubba Wallace says he ‘can totally relate to’ Naomi Osaka opening up about mental health

After Naomi Osaka announced she wouldn’t participate in press conferences during the French Open, the tennis world’s powers that be bullied one of the sport’s greatest stars and threatened her with future penalties.

Ultimately, Osaka withdrew from the French Open earlier this week and said she’s taking some time away from tennis, citing her concerns for her mental health among the reasons for her decision.

“The truth is that I have suffered long bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018 and I have had a really hard time coping with that,” she wrote in a statement on social media. “Anyone that knows me knows I’m introverted, and anyone that has seen me at the tournaments will notice that I’m often wearing headphones as that helps dull my social anxiety.”

For most people, it’s difficult to genuinely imagine what Osaka is going through after being thrown into the international spotlight with that U.S. Open win — her first of four Grand Slam victories.

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