Cincinnati, Aug 15 (IANS) Top women’s tennis player, Naomi Osaka of Japan on Sunday pledged to donate all the prize money from the Cincinnati Open, beginning Monday, to relief efforts for Haiti’s earthquake victims.
An earthquake of magnitude 7.2 hit Haiti on Saturday morning killing more than 300 people and leaving thousands homeless.
Born in Japan to a Haitian father and a Japanese mother, Naomi tweeted, “Really hurts to see all the devastation that’s going on in Haiti, and I feel like we really can’t catch a break. I’m about to play a tournament this week and I’ll give all the prize money to relief efforts for Haiti. I know our ancestors blood is strong we’ll keep rising (Flag of Haiti, Red heart, Folded hands symbols).”
The tournament, called the Western & Southern Open, is expected to award the women’s singles winner USD 2,55,220, while the runner-up will receive USD 1,88,945, according to perfect-tennis.com.
Naomi’s last competition was the Tokyo Olympics where she could not make it to the medal round after losing to Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic in the third round. She had also lit the Olympic cauldron during the opening ceremony.
World No. 2 Naomi had withdrawn from the French Open in May after winning her first-round match over her stand to not speak to the media due to her mental health. The four-time Grand Slam champion had also withdrawn from the Wimbledon in June.