One elite female athlete after another has had to drop out of the 2021 Olympics due to the coronavirus. Perhaps, the top track star learned from a reporter that her birth mother had died, made a choice to use marijuana, and then was kicked off the team. Then, there was another form of sport that was quite unpleasant.
Talk show host Megyn Kelly decided to go after tennis star Naomi Osaka for doing The Sports Illustrated cover promoting the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan. Her problem was with Osaka’s Olympic media campaign after the tennis star left the French Open and Wimbledon. The 23-year-old withdrew, because she had issues regarding press events:
‘From hitting 100 mph serves to posing for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, @NaomiOsaka can DO. IT. ALL. A determined athlete, Naomi has her sights set on ✨ gold ✨ at the upcoming games in Tokyo and we’re cheering her on every step of the way. 🥇 Thank you for being a part of our cover shoot this past December!’
Editor-in-chief of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit MJ Day released a statement:
‘We celebrate Naomi for her passion, strength and power geared toward consistently breaking barriers when it comes to equality, social justice, and mental health.’
She will attend the upcoming Olympics, ranking second in women’s tennis singles by the World Tennis Association.
The young star opened up about her mental health struggles, which interfered with the required media. Clay Travis tweeted:
‘Since saying she’s too introverted to talk to the media after tennis matches, Naomi Osaka has launched a reality show, a Barbie, and now is on the cover of the SI swimsuit issue.’
Kelly came down hard on Osaka for doing other covers, too. But she neglected to appreciate the differences between a photoshoot and being at the pointed end of reporters’ questions. Case in point, Kelly. The host tweeted:
‘Let’s not forget the cover of (& interview in) Vogue Japan and Time Mag!’
Osaka volleyed right back at Kelly. In a currently deleted tweet TheWrap noted:
‘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 [sic].’
Then, Osaka blocked Kelly. For some reason. the media host felt the need. to go to war with the tennis star:
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.’
Osaka, Megan Thee Stallion, and Leyna Bloom all were featured on the latest Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition covers, TheGrio wrote.
These covers made history Monday by breaking their respective molds. Three Stallion was the first rapper on the swimsuit cover. Osaka was the first Black female athlete, and Bloom was the first trans woman to appear on the cover.
Osaka also appeared on The Vogue Hong Kong last week.
Featured image was a screenshot via YouTube.
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