Naomi Osaka slams fan who appears to question her mental health comments

Osaka has been open about the mental health challenges she has faced on tour.

Clive Brunskill/GettyImages

Naomi Osaka has always been refreshingly honest about her mental health battles while playing professional tennis. She admitted to struggling with depression after she won the 2018 US Open. While she continued to win tennis titles, her personal health was not doing well. Part of the issue is how the press and social media treated her when she was near the top of tennis, something WTA No. 1 Iga Swiatek has recently complained about as well.

Three years ago at the start of her run at the French Open, she announced she would not be speaking with reporters while the tournament was ongoing. She was fined by the Grand Slam event $15,000 for not meeting with the press and was on the verge of potentially being kicked out of the event but Osaka chose to withdraw instead. Thankfully, she revealed in 2022 on The Late Show that she got quite a bit of support from her fellow players, more than fans or the press.

But some people who have no part in Osaka's life cannot seem to let go of how to handled the press a few years ago. In a recently deleted Instagram post from the player, Osaka responded to a fan (or, let's be honest, a troll) who asked a mean-spirited and ignorant question of the tennis great. Clearly, the person posting the question has zero idea how mental stress can affect a person.

Naomi Osaka claps back at fan who questions her integrity

The question posed, and in relation to the 2021 French Open events, was, "Is this the same Naomi Osaka who refuses to talk to the media and cries foul on questions that are both appropriate and necessary?"

First of all, while the WTA and major tournaments expect players to meet with the media, Osaka's main job is to be good at tennis. Meeting with media only helps the tournament get a connection to fans, but the player does not often get much from a question and answer. This is especially true after a loss. If Osaka does not want to meet with the media, she shouldn't have to.

Osaka could have also just ignored the comment on Instagram and blocked the user, "troncarternlu," from posting on her page again. But she felt moved to answer because the question was so callous. Osaka wrote, "I didn't talk for one tournament in 2021, you seem very affected by that are you ok? Honestly lol cause why are some people still so hurt by something that happened to me 3 years ago."

That is a good point made by Osaka. But then that is how social media works for most, unfortunately. People like to spew hate toward someone they will never know and whose events in that person's life have nothing to do with them.

Read more from Lob and Smash