At the French Open 2021, Naomi Osaka had called off her campaign before the second round, citing mental health concerns. Before that, she boycotted the media duties as it put undue pressure on her. Seemingly, it hurt her cordial relations with many journalists, and a couple of them have now decided to hit back.
Recently, Osaka appeared on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2021 edition. She tweeted the magazine covers and stated that she is the “First Haitian and Japanese woman on the cover.”
First Haitian and Japanese woman on the cover 🇭🇹🇯🇵❤️ pic.twitter.com/SLcKNSrSkH
After this, reporter Clay Travis pointed out that the Japanese star has launched a reality show, a Barbie, and now is on the SI swimsuit issue since boycotting the media. In addition to that, renowned journalist Megyn Kelly reminded Twitteratis about the “cover of (& interview in) Vogue Japan and Time Mag!”
Let’s not forget the cover of (& interview in) Vogue Japan and Time Mag! https://t.co/PAAUEwAVi0
— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) July 19, 2021
Consequently, the four-time Grand Slam champion Osaka tried to enlighten the journalist with facts. However, it could not help keep Kelly away from making crude comments.
Naomi Osaka and journalist in a heated battle after Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2021 issue launch
Naomi Osaka, 23, has always been absolute and upfront about her feelings on and off the court. Probably, it is one of the reasons why she has a tremendous following so early in her career.
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 30, 2021 Picture taken May 30, 2021 Japan’s Naomi Osaka reacts during her first round match against Romania’s Patricia Maria Tig REUTERS/Christian Hartmann
But despite her nervousness in front of the camera, Osaka has never been shy to call out the wrong. Naturally, she asked Kelly to check her facts.
“Seeing as you’re a journalist, I would’ve assumed you would take the time to research what the lead times are for magazines. If you did that, you would’ve found out I shot all of my covers last year. Instead, your first reaction is to hop on here and spew negativity. Do better, Megan,” Osaka answered her.
Drag-saka is back! 😂🤣 pic.twitter.com/iMVIW3Fs6w
— WTA Tea (@WTATea) July 19, 2021
Afterwards, the current WTA World No.2 blocked Kelly, and it gave the journalist a chance to retort.
“Poor Naomi Osaka blocked me while taking a shot at me (guess she’s only tough on the courts). She is apparently arguing that she shot her many covers before publicly claiming she was too socially anxious to deal with press. Truth is she just doesn’t like questions she can’t control. Admit it,” Kelly replied.
Poor @naomiosaka blocked me while taking a shot at me (guess she’s only tough on the courts). She is apparently arguing that she shot her many covers b/4 publicly claiming she was too socially anxious to deal w/press. Truth is she just doesn’t like Qs she can’t control. Admit it. pic.twitter.com/izyRzOrUVm
Following that, 18-time Grand Slam winner Martina Navratilova came in support of the Japanese star. She wrote, “A**h*** much, Megyn?!? You have no idea what you are talking about. But go ahead- take your shot. It missed badly!!!”
Asshole much , Megyn?!? You have no idea what you are talking about. But go ahead- take your shot. It missed badly!!! https://t.co/aCQTSvIT2Z
— Martina Navratilova (@Martina) July 19, 2021
Furthermore, another famous reporter, Piers Morgan, joined in behind Kelly. Agreeing with her, he said, “Yep, and she just blocked me too. The only media Ms Osaka wants to tolerate are sycophantic magazine editors telling her how perfect she is.”
All in all, the Japanese No.1 would offer next to zero attention to them as she prepares for her return on tennis courts at Tokyo Olympics. Hopefully, some good tennis from her racquet might put a cover over all of this soon.
Queen ‘disappointed’ with Meghan Markle, Harry over christening move
Queen Elizabeth is reportedly ‘disappointed’ over Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s move to christen Lilibet within the US and a former butler believes she’ll be heartbroken to miss such a special event.
Some former staffers even fear she’ll be utterly heartbroken if she is not able to participate in the grand event.
The Firm’s former royal butler Grant Harrold made this claim during his interview with Express.
There he speculated upon the possible plan of action Prince Harry and Meghan Markle may take regarding the christening, for the Queen, and claimed, “I am sure if this does not take place in the UK, the Queen will be disappointed to not attend the christening of her great-granddaughter.”
He also went on to add, “However, as with many families who have family overseas, sometimes it is not possible.”
“Maybe their christening will be recorded so the family in the UK can watch as well? Family is very important to the Queen and I am sure before too long she will meet her great-granddaughter.”
Oleksandr Usyk sends warning to Tyson Fury ahead of Anthony Joshua rematch
Oleksandr Usyk will put his newly won WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight belts on the line in his rematch with Anthony Joshua next year, but he’s already thinking about taking on Tyson Fury. The Ukrainian, 34, left British boxing fans stunned when he outclassed Joshua in London last month, scuppering hopes of a long awaited clash between Fury and ‘AJ’ in early 2022.
Joshua, 31, did promptly trigger his rematch clause however, before Fury came through his stunning trilogy bout with Deontay Wilder to retain his WBO and Ring Magazine titles.
Now Usyk, who after Evander Holyfied and David Haye is only the third fighter to win world titles at cruiserweight and heavyweight level, is plotting to again get past Joshua before targeting a lucrative unification fight with ‘The Gypsy King’.
Speaking to The Sun, he was asked if he could see a clash with Fury happening: “Yes, of course, I do regard this fight a huge one. I see him as a very good fighter, good athlete, he talks a lot, he has a tongue.
“He claims he’s the king of the kings, but it’s only he who thinks that. That’s what I can say about him.”
Usyk, who won Olympic Gold at heavyweight level in the London 2012 Olympics, now has a professional record of 19-0-0, but was second favourite to beat Joshua at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
He cites that factor as further reason as to why he can potentially overcome Fury.
“Before my Joshua fight everyone was saying that I haven’t got a single chance to win and beat Joshua,” he continued.
“I used to hear those types of things throughout my life, but I am capable of beating Fury because I’m not boasting that I can just punish and beat every boxer in the world, but I just go to the gym and do my job.”
Hughie Fury could fight Derek Chisora in huge domestic fight
Since beating Wilder in Las Vegas, Fury, 33, has declared himself the beat heavyweight of this generation, and Usyk appeared to take a dig at that claim by adding “I’m not trying to present myself as the king of the Universe.
“I do what I have to do. I concentrate and I’m focused and I get the result according to my effort.”
The Ukrainian did however, acknowledge that Fury’s unique boxing style made him successful and brought him victories, which he said was the “main thing.”
As for Fury’s next opponent, that remains unclear after Dillian Whyte was forced to postpone his bout with Otto Wallin because of a shoulder injury.
Fury’s next opponent is unclear
Anthony Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn takes dig at Tyson Fury
Whyte, 33, is the mandatory challenger to Fury’s WBO crown, and it was widely thought a win over Wallin on October 30 would pave the way for a world title shot for ‘The Body Snatcher’.
Whyte, who has long been embroiled in an online war of words with Fury, said this week: “I am devastated as I had a great camp, was in great shape, and had great sparring.
“I was looking forward to knocking Wallin out and would have done so in the first half of the fight.”
Tennis great’s message to Emma Raducanu amid coaching drama
British teenage tennis phenomenon Emma Raducanu has been urged to find some coaching stability after a tumultuous period in the wake of her historic US Open title.
Raducanu raised eyebrows after parting ways with coach Andrew Richardson after her US Open victory – in a move that surprised many tennis commentators.
Richardson coached the teenage star for two years at youth level and linked up with her again in July on a short-term deal for the duration of her time in the United States.
However, Raducanu said she was looking for a coach with more experience at the elite level of world tennis.
The 18-year-old parted ways with coach Nigel Sears after her breakthrough Wimbledon run to the last 16, where she eventually succumbed to breathing difficulties.
She then linked up with Richardson to claim an almost unthinkable maiden grand slam title at Flushing Meadows, before again deciding to move on to new pastures.
Raducanu’s partnership with Katie Boulter’s coach Jeremy Bates was always going to be a stop-gap situation for the Indian Wells tournament in which the Brit crashed out in her first match.
Pictured here, Emma Raducanu speaks to the media at the Indian Wells tournament.
Emma Raducanu’s search for a new coach has taken many in the tennis world by surprise. Pic: AAP
The World No.24 is now set to link up with Spaniard Esteban Carril – who previously worked with fellow Brit Johanna Konta, before being axed just weeks after she was named most improved player of 2016 and broke into the world’s top ten.
Raducanu in set to play in the Transylvania Open in her father’s native Romania, but Carril is not set to start his tenure with the Brit until after the tournament.
Carril will be Raducanu’s fourth different coach in four months and British tennis great Greg Rusedksi says the teenager needs to find some stability for her game to flourish.
“Esteban (Carril) did a great job with Jo Konta when she had her big breakthrough and got into the top 10 in the world,” he said.
“Hopefully this works out for Emma. But she needs consistency from a team point of view to push on with all the success she has had at the US Open.”
Former British tennis player Barry Cowan said despite enjoying success at Wimbledon and then the US Open, Raducanu simply cannot keep churning through the coaches.
Teen warned about chopping and changing
“She made the Last 16 of Wimbledon and the coach got fired. She won the US Open and the coach got fired,” Cowan said.
“You cannot keep running your career like that. It will eventually catch up with you.
“Certainly she needs to build up and strike a relationship with Esteban. I hope it is successful and lasts.
“I don’t care who you are, whether you are Emma Raducanu, Serena Williams or Novak Djokovic, if you are having coaches short-term, it’s going to come back to bite you.”