Tennis

Naomi Osaka adds voice to protest over police brutality in US

Two-time Grand Slam tennis champion Naomi Osaka joined the chorus of athletes condemning the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, at the hands of Minneapolis police, posting pictures of protests from the Minnesota city on her Instagram account.

"Just because it isn't happening to you, doesn't mean it isn't happening at all," wrote Osaka, whose mother is Japanese and whose father is Haitian.

"It's funny to me that the people who wanna wear chains, blast hip hop in the gym, attempt to get dapped up, and talk in slang are suddenly quiet right now," added Osaka, the former world No. 1 who was this week touted by Forbes magazine as the world's highest-paid female athlete with earnings of US$37.4 million (S$52.8m).

Minneapolis has become the epicentre of violent protests since Floyd died there last Monday after police officer Derek Chauvin pinned him to the ground for several minutes by kneeling on his neck.

Chauvin has been charged with murder and negligent manslaughter, but protests across the country have turned violent.

US sports stars attuned to social issues, such as LeBron James, were quick to voice outrage at Floyd's death. Others such as rising US tennis star Coco Gauff, who posted her own chilling condemnation of Floyd's death on social media, also applauded Osaka's Instagram's post. - AFP

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