Tennis champion Naomi Osaka has vowed to donate her winnings from next week’s Western & Southern Open to earthquake relief efforts in Haiti.
“Really hurts to see all the devastation that’s going on in Haiti, and I feel like we really can’t catch a break,” the world’s number two-ranking tennis player tweeted Saturday.
“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.”
The Caribbean nation was struck by a 7.2-magnitude earthquake Saturday that left at least 1,297 people dead and injured and displaced thousands more. The natural disaster hit as Haitians were already reeling from a pandemic and presidential assassination.
The tournament starts Monday in Cincinnati. The women’s singles champion is expected to take home just over $255,000 in prize money, from a total prize money pool of $1.835 million, according to website Perfect Tennis. Osaka reached the finals of the comp last year but had to withdraw due to an injury.
Osaka, 23, was born in Japan to a Japanese mother and Haitian father. She moved to the United States when she was 3 years old and grew up as a Japanese-American dual citizen.