The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) has condemned the decision of the Wimbledon championship and the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association, which is the national governing body of tennis in Great Britain) to ban Russian and Belarusian players due to the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Wimbledon became the first major tournament to impose a full ban on the Russian and Belarusian players as individuals because of the ongoing war in Ukraine. This means world No. 2 Daniil Medvedev of Russia and women’s world No. 4 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus might not play on the grass-court this year.
ATP issued a statement against Wimbledon stating that despite the governing body being against the actions of the Russian military, ‘as individuals to earn their place in tournaments based on the ATP Rankings.’
Here is the statement by AFP:
“We strongly condemn Russia’s reprehensible invasion of Ukraine and stand in solidarity with the millions of innocent people affected by the ongoing war. Our sport is proud to operate on the fundamental principles of merit and fairness, where players compete as individuals to earn their place in tournaments based on the ATP Rankings.
“We believe that the unilateral decision by Wimbledon and the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association, which is the national governing body of tennis in Great Britain) to exclude players from Russia and Belarus from this year’s British grass-court swing is unfair and has the potential to set a damaging precedent for the game. Discrimination based on nationality also constitutes a violation of our agreement with Wimbledon that states that player entry is based solely on ATP Rankings. Any course of action in response to this decision will now be assessed in consultation with our Board and Member councils.
“It is important to stress that players from Russia and Belarus will continue to be allowed to compete at ATP events under a neutral flag, a position that has until now been shared across professional tennis. In parallel, we will continue our joint humanitarian support for Ukraine under Tennis Plays for Peace,” said the statement.
Here Is Wimbledon’s statement:
Statement regarding Russian and Belarusian individuals at The Championships 2022.
— Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) April 20, 2022
Ahead of the ban, Kremlin had said that banning Russian tennis players from Wimbledon over Moscow’s military campaign in Ukraine would be “unacceptable, AFP reported.”https://news.abplive.com/”This is unacceptable,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.