Wimbledon bans Russian and Belarusian tennis players

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Wimbledon has excluded Russian and Belarusian tennis players from this summer’s tournament due to the war in Ukraine.

“In the circumstances of such unjustified and unprecedented military aggression, it would be unacceptable for the Russian regime to derive benefits from the involvement of Russian or Belarusian players in the Championships,” the All England Club said. said in a press release Wednesday. “We therefore intend, with deep regret, to refuse Russian and Belarusian player registrations for the 2022 Championships.”

Russia and Belarus were already banned from international team tennis competitions, including the Davis Cup and the Billie Jean King Cup.

Wimbledon is the first major tennis tournament to ban individual players from Russia and Belarus. The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), Britain’s tennis governing body, also banned players from those nations from upcoming international tournaments in an announcement on Wednesday.

The ban means that the man ranked No. 2, Daniel Medvedev, is out of Wimbledon. Like it’s #8 Andrei Rublev.

Also absent from the women’s singles: n°4 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, No. 15 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia and No. 18 Victoria Azarenka from Belarus.

“We recognize that this is hard on those affected, and it is with sadness that they will suffer from the actions of the leaders of the Russian regime,” the All England Club said. Ian Hewitt said in a statement. “We have very carefully considered what alternative measures could be taken within UK Government guidelines but, given the high profile environment of the Championships, the importance of not allowing the sport to be used to promote the Russian regime and our wider concerns for the public and the safety of players (including family), we do not believe it is viable to proceed on any other basis with the Championships.

If circumstances change materially by June, the tournament will “review and react accordingly”, he said.

The ATP, which has allowed players from Russia and Belarus to compete in its men’s tournaments under a neutral flag, called Wednesday’s decisions unfair with “the potential to set a damaging precedent for the match.”

“Discrimination based on nationality is also a breach of our agreement with Wimbledon which stipulates that player entry is based solely on ATP rankings,” he said.

Later, the WTA said it was “very disappointed” with the decisions.

“As the WTA has always stated, individual athletes should not be penalized or prevented from competing because of their origin or the decisions made by the governments of their countries,” the WTA said in a statement.

The ATP and WTA have said they will evaluate possible other stages in response to the Wimbledon and LTA decisions.

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