Naomi Osaka reveals she is talking to therapist after Indian Wells heckling incident

By Daily Sports Nigeria on March 24, 2022

Views: 281

Naomi Osaka admitted her decision to speak to a therapist came after realising her sister, former professional tennis player Mari Osaka, became "very concerned for me"

Naomi Osaka revealed she has started talking to a therapist as she made a winning return to the court on Wednesday, having been heckled at Indian Wells earlier this month.

The four-time Grand Slam champion cruised to a straight-sets victory over Astra Sharma at the Miami Open in what marked her first appearance since her second-round defeat to Veronika Kudermetova at the BNP Paribas Masters in California, during which a spectator appeared to shout "Naomi, you suck".

"I don't know if I'm allowed to say this, but I finally started talking to a therapist after Indian Wells," Osaka told reporters. "It only took like a year after the French Open.

"She kind of told me strategies and stuff. I realise how helpful it is. I'm glad that I have people around me that told me to, like, go in that direction.

"But, yeah, I was basically just remembering all the things that she told me to do, just to take deep breaths and reset myself when I need to."

Osaka withdrew from the French Open last year after opting against speaking to the media due to her mental health, revealing she had been suffering with long bouts of depression.

The 24-year-old subsequently missed Wimbledon later in the summer before returning to compete at the Tokyo Olympics, and announced she was taking another break from tennis after losing to eventual runner-up Leylah Fernandez in the third round of the US Open.

Asked about her decision to see a therapist, she explained: "Honestly because my sister kind of, like, seemed very concerned for me.

"I don't know. Like I feel like I've been trying a lot of different things because I tend to internalise things, and I also want to do everything by myself."

World No 1 Ashleigh Barty says her retirement from professional tennis at 25 felt right after winning at Wimbledon changed her perspective.

Osaka noted on Wednesday that the incident at Indian Wells was the first time she believes she has ever been heckled in her career, adding that her time speaking to a therapist has already helped her become more equipped to deal with a similar situation in the future.

"I think for me, the situation in Indian Wells, I've kind of thought back on it. I realise I've never been heckled," she said. "I've been booed, but not like a direct yell-out kind of thing. It kind of took me out of my element.

"I feel like I'm prepared for it now. I was kind of bracing myself before the match to just know that's a thing that could happen now. I think I just needed to change my mindset a little."

 


 

 

 

Source Sky Sports

Posted March 24, 2022


 

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