Tennis sensation Naomi Osaka is being sued by her former coach in the millions. According to TMZ, Osaka’s former coach Christophe Jean claimed that the world number one player owes him 20 percent of her career earnings. Jean was hired by Osaka’s father Leonard Francois, with whom he apparently signed a contract which promised him the money. The news was first reported by TMZ. As per the publication, Jean demanded at least $2 million of the $10.8 million prize money that Osaka gathered over the course of her career.
The lawsuit was reportedly filed in a Florida court. It stated that Jean had coached Osaka and her sister Mari back in 2011. He claimed that Francois was not able to pay him at that time. However, he did agree to a contract with Jean, one which granted the coach 20 percent of their prize money and the endorsements. The agreement was reportedly for an ‘indefinite period.’
TMZ quoted Osaka’s lawyer Alex Spiro as saying that the alleged contract was ‘absurd’ and that Osaka had never seen it. However, he also mentioned that “Naomi’s meteoric rise as an international icon and inspiration would lead to some false claim.”
Speaking to Sun Sentinel, Jean said: "I didn't want to do this, but the last time I talked with Max (Leonard Francois) he told me to go get a lawyer. So I got a lawyer." Osaka has not yet commented on the lawsuit as of now.
Osaka is the tenth woman in the history of tennis to win the US Open and the Australian Open successively. She also became the first ever Asian world number one after winning the Australian Open in January this year.