RAPPER Cordae and world-renowned tennis star Naomi Osaka began dating in 2019.
Osaka recently skipped a press conference following her first-round victory at the French Open and has now withdrawn altogether following the backlash.
Who is Cordae?
Cordae is an American rapper, singer, and songwriter.
The 23-year-old, from Raleigh, North Carolina, came up on the hip hop scene after releasing remixes of popular songs My Name Is by Eminem and Old N*****, a response to 1985 by J. Cole.
His debut studio album The Lost Boy was released in 2019 and met with widespread critical acclaim, earning him two Grammy nominations for Best Rap Album and Best Rap Song at the 62nd Grammy awards.
A post shared by Cordae' (@cordae)
Cordae was a member of the YBN collective from 2018 until he left the group in 2020.
Cordae is currently working on his second album, telling Apple Music that: "I'm like a hundred songs deep in. Like this next one, I'm really taking everything to a whole 'nother level."
"I really love doing music and perfecting my craft and I'm getting better every day. And the new music from here on out is going to show that."
Why did Naomi Osaka withdraw from the French Open?
On Monday, May 31, Osaka announced she'll withdraw from the French Open – citing mental health reasons.
The move comes after Osaka announced that she would not participate in press interviews at the Grand Slam event to help protect her mental health.
Osaka announced her resignation from the tournament on Twitter, tweeting, "Hey everyone, this isn’t a situation I ever imagined or intended when I posted a few days ago.
“I think now the best thing for the tournament, the other players and my well-being is that I withdraw so that everyone can get back to focusing on the tennis going on in Paris, Osaka wrote.
Osaka said she had suffered bouts of depression since winning her first slam title at the US Open in 2018 and that talking to the media triggered anxiety.
“I never wanted to be a distraction and I accept that my timing was not ideal and my message could have been clearer,” she continued in her tweet.
“More importantly, I would never trivialize mental health or use the term lightly. The truth is that I have suffered long bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018 and I have had a really hard time coping with that.
“Anyone that knows me knows I’m introverted, and anyone that has seen me at the tournaments will notice that I’m often wearing headphones as that helps dull my social anxiety.
“Though the tennis press has always been kind to me (and I wanna apologize especially to all the cool journalists who I may have hurt), I am not a natural public speaker and get huge waves of anxiety before I speak to the world’s media.”
Officials at the French tournament asked, "her to reconsider her position and tried unsuccessfully to speak with her to check on her well-being."
What did Cordae say about Naomi Osaka's withdrawal?
Cordae issued a defiant comment on his girlfriend's Instagram post that announced her withdrawal from the tournament.
“No need to apologise to ANYBODY!” he wrote.
Further reposting her announcement to his Instagram story, he penned "THE ONE!" above it.
A post shared by 大坂なおみ (@naomiosaka)
GQ has previously labeled the pair “the most dynamic and outspoken young couple in the culture right now.”
The pair reportedly first met in April 2019 but didn't make their first public appearance until December 2019.
The rapper is immensely supportive of his talented tennis girlfriend and is often seen cheering her on at her tournaments.
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