Tennis superstar Naomi Osaka has hit back at Megyn Kelly for criticizing her – reacting angrily to the journalist’s comments on Twitter, then blocking her.
The feud – in which the great Martina Navratilova once got involved – started when 23-year-old Osaka unveiled her Sports Illustrated cover.
The Japanese-Haitian four-time Grand Slam winner is the first female black athlete to star on the cover of the swimsuit edition.
She is one of three women to star – the others being Megan Thee Stallion, the first rapper to appear, and Leyna Bloom, the first transgender cover model.
Still, Osaka’s cover came after she withdrew from both the French Open and Wimbledon, citing efforts to protect her mental health. Osaka previously revealed that she has been suffering from depression since 2018.
Naomi Osaka, 23, is the first female black athlete to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit edition
MJ Day, editor-in-chief of the magazine’s swimsuits issue, said: “There’s no question Naomi is one of the best athletes in the world, and a cover spot seemed obvious. She has spent her formative years collecting titles and is on her way to the Olympics. But we celebrate Naomi for her passion, strength and strength that is focused on consistently breaking down barriers when it comes to equality, social justice and mental health.”
“There’s no question that Naomi is one of the best athletes in the world, and a cover spot seemed obvious,” said MJ Day, the editor of the swimsuit edition.
“She has spent her formative years collecting titles and is on her way to the Olympics.
“But we celebrate Naomi for her passion, strength and strength that is focused on consistently breaking down barriers when it comes to equality, social justice and mental health.”
Kelly responded to a tweet from conservative commentator Clay Travis that read: “Since she says she’s too introverted to talk to the media after tennis matches, Naomi Osaka has launched a reality show, a Barbie, and is now on the cover of the SI -swimsuit issue.’
Megyn Kelly, former Fox News anchor turned podcast host, criticized Naomi Osaka for her SI swimsuit edition cover
Osaka, the first Asian to reach number one in the world, appears on the cover of the August issue of Japan’s Vogue
Known for speaking out about mental health issues, Osaka withdrew from the French Open in May, arguing it wasn’t good for her state of mind
Kelly, an ex-Fox News anchor, shared the tweet, adding: “Let’s not forget the cover of (& interview in) Vogue Japan and Time Mag!”
Osaka, who will represent Japan at the Tokyo Olympics, replied: “Since you’re a journalist, I assumed you’d take the time to research the lead times for magazines. found out I shot all my covers last year.
“Instead, your first reaction is to jump over here and spew negativity, better do Megan.”
The number two in the world then blocked Kelly on the social media app.
Osaka promotes her Barbie doll – a doll that sold out immediately online
“Poor @naomiosaka blocked me from firing at me (I think she’s only hard on the track),” Kelly replied.
She apparently claims she has shot her many B/4 covers in public and claims she was too socially tense to deal with the press.
“The truth is, she just doesn’t like Q’s she can’t control. Admit it.’
Piers Morgan, editor-in-chief of DailyMail.com, agreed with Kelly, tweeting, “Yeah, and she’s blocked me too.
“The only media that Ms. Osaka will tolerate are sycophantic magazine editors who tell her how perfect she is.”
Navratilova then joined in and said to Kelly, ‘A****** a lot, Megyn?!? You have no idea what you’re talking about.
‘But go ahead, make your move. It missed a lot!!!’
Kelly replied, “Actually, being an “a******”, as you so elegantly put it, calls for “riots everywhere” like you did after G Floyd died – while sitting in one of your mansions in zero Danger. 19 people died in said riots – including David Dorn. Now you want to pretend you care about others? Please.’