Naomi Osaka pulls out of Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo due to illness on Thursday.
The world’s top women’s tennis player Naomi Osaka, whose team was struggling to find footing in Tokyo, has been forced to withdraw from the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo because of illness.
Osaka, who has won back-to-back Wimbledon and US Open titles since making her debut in 2017, did not speak to the media on Thursday, but her withdrawal is the first of two consecutive withdrawals that will leave the Japanese number one ranked at world number one.
The tournament, which was due to host the 2018 Olympic Games, has been overshadowed with uncertainty after the revelation that Naomi Osaka’s sudden decline in training and training efficiency has left her team leaderless.
She had planned to play in her third consecutive Pan Pacific Open, after winning the Australian Open in January. The Australian Open is normally a tough one for her team as it is a Grand Slam tournament for the top women’s players.
The withdrawal of one of these women puts enormous pressure on the Japanese federation to find a replacement to lead the Japanese team in the women’s doubles, which was scheduled to be played in Osaka on Tuesday.
In a statement, the Japanese women’s team said: “We are extremely disappointed but are fully confident that she will pull through and we believe her strong mental and physical health will be the best medicine for her recovery.”
With Naomi Osaka out, the team now looks at the two singles players, Naomi Osaka’s partner and the winner of the women’s title on Tuesday, who will move into a semi-final clash against the Japanese team.
There is a chance that either of them could face an upending of their fate.
The top seed in the women’s singles looks to be the only player to avoid an upset against the Japanese team.
The Japanese team said that on the day the women’s team decided to pull out of the Pan Pacific Open, the top seeds in both the men’s and women’s singles looked set to be in a battle for a place in