Naomi Osaka would make her Olympic debut in Tokyo
According to Naomi Osaka, rising Covid-19 levels in Tokyo are a “big cause for concern” and she is “not really sure” whether the Olympic Games should take place this summer.
Tokyo is in a state of emergency 10 weeks after the scheduled games start on July 23.
The Japanese number two in the world, Osaka, would make her Olympic debut in Tokyo.
“I’m an athlete and of course my immediate thought is that I want to play in the Olympics,” she said.
“But as a human, I would say that we are in a pandemic. If people are not healthy and do not feel safe, this is definitely a big cause for concern.”
When asked by BBC Sport whether it would be appropriate to host the Games during a pandemic, the 23-year-old said, “To be honest, I’m not sure.”
The Olympics will be held without international fans, while a decision will be made in June whether local fans can attend the games.
“I’ve never played an Olympic event, so I wouldn’t have anything like it,” said the four-time Grand Slam champion Osaka.
“I would definitely feel a little sad, of course, but at the end of the day it’s an honor to even play in the Olympics and if that keeps people healthy I’ll be ready.” [playing behind closed doors]. “
Williams undecided about Tokyo
Meanwhile, the 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams has expressed doubts about her participation in the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Williams, who has won one singles and three doubles gold medals, is reluctant to spend time outside of her three-year-old daughter Olympia.
“I haven’t spent 24 hours without it, so that species answers the question itself,” said the 39-year-old American.
“I haven’t really thought much about Tokyo because it should be last year and now it’s this year and then there is this pandemic and there is so much to think about.
“Then there are the Grand Slams. It’s just a lot. So I really made mistakes one day at a time and I definitely have to figure out my next steps.”
Williams, who ranks eighth in the world, is expected to play at the Italian Open this week, their first tournament since losing to eventual champions Osaka in the Australian Open semifinals in February.