Mari Osaka announces tennis retirement: ‘It was a journey I didn’t enjoy’

Fans rushed to the young star’s page to show her love

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Mari Osaka is ready for her next journey.

The tennis star announced via Instagram she is ready for the next phase in her life. The 24-year-old took to Instagram on Tuesday and said farewell.

“I am retired from playing tennis,” captioned Osaka, the older sister to Naomi Osaka, on the post.  

Mari Osaka thegrio.com
Mari Osaka of Japan returns a shot to Whitney Osuigwe during the Miami Open Presented by Itau at Hard Rock Stadium March 21, 2019 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

According to Sports Illustrated, the tennis player ranked at No. 335 in the world among women’s players. In the spring of 2018, she came in at No. 280.

“It was a journey which I didn’t enjoy ultimately but I’m grateful for all the memories and support I’ve gained and received over the years from the sport. I’m moving on now so you can look forward to new fun projects upcoming in the future.”

Fans rushed to the young star’s page to show her love.

“A little hurt…but I know you’re not going anywhere! I’m proud of you and you’re doing what’s best for YOUR LIFE AND PATH!! ALL LOVE!❤️,” wrote one user.

“Thank you, Mari. We wish you all the best! You are an incredible individual and I’m sure whatever you do next is going to be awesome! The best is yet to come, ❤️”” another added.

Black women in sports have been receiving much-deserved recognition this month. Nike just released a campaign celebrating women in sports, per theGrio. Nike is showing love to Black women in a new campaign.

The retail giant recently launched its ‘We Play Real,’ campaign that showed solidarity with Black women athletes.

Naomi Osaka thegrio.com
Japan’s Naomi Osaka celebrates after defeating United States’ Jennifer Brady during the women’s singles final at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021..(AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

“It’s not magic,” said playwright and actress Dominique Fishback, 29, who narrates the video featuring stars like Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka, per People Magazine.  “Yeah, we can make things float. Make something appear out of absolutely nothing. But even the greatest magicians worked at that trick. It’s not magic, organic.”

She added, “From the curl in our hair to the tip of our toes. The sway of our hips and the joy of our smile. We give our blood, sweat and tears to give our very best. Even when the world tells us it’s never going to be enough.”

“We got that thing, that hooping, soccer-playing, game-changing, oh so resilient double-A outing, butterfly-stroking thing. We worked for all of this. You thought history just made itself? Nah baby, this ain’t magic. This, this is the real thing.”

The brand is also donating $500K to Black Girl Ventures, a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to providing Black and brown woman founders with access to capital, community, and help meeting business milestones.

Nike will also launch a campaign during which NBA stars will collaborate with Black women who are making a difference in culture, sports, and society. The women will team up with an NBA star and use their social media to promote their own stories of success.

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