Piers Morgan Defends Calling Naomi Osaka 'Spoiled Brat' After U.S. Open Exit

British journalist and commentator Piers Morgan has defended calling tennis star Naomi Osaka a "spoiled brat" following her exit from the U.S. Open on Friday and video of her slamming a racket.

Osaka was defeated by 18-year-old Leylah Fernandez and was apparently frustrated by the loss, which saw her out of the competition. She slammed her racket off the ground during the match and even threw it at one point.

Morgan took to Twitter early Saturday to share a video of Osaka's treatment of the racket from Business Insider sports reporter Meredith Cash and took the opportunity to defend his previous comments.

"People got very upset when I suggested Naomi Osaka may be a spoiled brat.
Here she is repeatedly smashing up rackets as she loses in the US Open," Morgan tweeted.

"Then she cried again, and threatened to quit again. If a male tennis player behaved like this, we'd call him.... a spoiled brat," he said.

In June, Morgan caused controversy by calling Osaka an "arrogant spoiled brat" for refusing to speak to the media at the French Open.

Osaka had said before the competition that she would not be speaking to the media for mental health reasons but was fined $15,000 for not attending a press conference. Morgan criticized her in a column for The Daily Mail and faced significant backlash.

On Saturday, Morgan also responded to criticism that he hadn't called other tennis players a "brat" for similar behavior. One Twitter user suggested it was "weird" that Morgan hadn't done so.

"Not weird, just untrue," Morgan replied. "When [Novak] Djokovic threw a similar racket-smashing tantrum at the Tokyo Olympics, I called him a spoiled brat."

People got very upset when I suggested Naomi Osaka may be a spoiled brat.
Here she is repeatedly smashing up rackets as she loses in the US Open.
Then she cried again, and threatened to quit again.
If a male tennis player behaved like this, we'd call him.... a spoiled brat. https://t.co/bdK1u7OmM9

— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) September 4, 2021

Following her defeat by Fernandez, Osaka said she would take a break from tennis during a post-match news conference where she appeared to be tearful.

"I feel like I'm kind of at this point where I'm trying to figure out what I want to do," the 23-year-old said.

"I honestly don't know when I'm going to play my next tennis match. I think I'm going to take a break from playing for a while," she said.

"I feel like for me recently, when I win I don't feel happy. I feel more like a relief. And then when I lose, I feel very sad. I don't think that's normal," Osaka went on.

Osaka appeared to apologize for her performance, saying: "I'm really sorry about that."

"I'm not really sure why. Normally I feel like I like challenges. But recently I feel very anxious when things don't go my way, and I feel like you can feel that. I was kind of like a little kid," she said.

Naomi Osaka Competes at the U.S. Open
Naomi Osaka of Japan returns against Leylah Fernandez of Canada during her Women's Singles third round match on Day Five of the US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 03, 2021 in New York City. Piers Morgan has doubled down on criticism of the tennis star. Elsa/Getty Images