Naomi Osaka Won't Participate in 2020 French Open Because of Hamstring Injury

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorSeptember 18, 2020

Naomi Osaka, of Japan, holds up the championship trophy after defeating Victoria Azarenka, of Belarus, in the women's singles final of the US Open tennis championships, Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

Naomi Osaka, who won her second U.S. Open and third Grand Slam title last Saturday, revealed on social media that she will not participate in the French Open due to a hamstring injury:

Osaka suffered a left hamstring injury in her Western & Southern Open semifinal win over Elise Mertens on Aug. 28. The ailment prevented her from competing in the final against Victoria Azarenka, who won in a walkover.

Osaka was good enough to go for the U.S. Open and won all seven of her matches, capped by a three-set victory over Azarenka in the final.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, however, the French Open was moved to September and October. With the tournament starting Sept. 27, that leaves Osaka just two weeks to rest up for the tournament, leading to her decision as referenced in her post.

Osaka was phenomenal in the U.S. Open. Her opponents took her to a third set on four occasions, but Osaka battled back each time for a win. The 22-year-old dominated third sets, winning 24 of 34 games.

She won $3 million en route to her third Grand Slam title and sixth singles win overall.

Osaka isn't the only big name sitting out the French Open.

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Of note, Ash Barty, the No. 1 player in the world and defending French Open champion, is out this year after citing health concerns due to the COVID-19 pandemic, per the Associated Press (h/t CBC).

Twenty-time major winner Roger Federer has previously announced that he is skipping the entire clay court season for the grass and hard court seasons in an effort to prolong his career.

"I've been working really hard, both on and off the court, during the last month but in order to try and play on the ATP World Tour for many years to come, I feel it's best to skip the clay court season this year and prepare for the grass and hard court seasons," Federer said in part.

Some of tennis' biggest stars will still take center stage at Roland Garros, including Serena Williams, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.