Elina Svitolina claims matches against ‘neutral athletes’ from Russia and Belarus drain her energy extra as the Ukraine war continues to wreak havoc

Elina Svitolina has always been vocal about her stand regarding Ukrainian players denying Russian players handshake amid the current political scenario.


Elina Svitolina claims matches against ‘neutral athletes’ from Russia and Belarus drain her energy extra as the Ukraine war continues to wreak havoc

Elina Svitolina (Source: CNN)

Elina Svitolina talked about a lot of things, ranging from her childhood to her future and the current condition of Ukraine, in her latest interview with Vogue. Being a Ukrainian herself, she vividly explained how tough it is for the people in Ukraine currently and went on to say that the political relations between her country and Russia make it difficult for her to face Russian and Belarusian opponents on the court who play under neutral flags.  

It's part of the job. They are not exhausting, but the matches against Russian and Belarusian athletes, who are allowed to compete under neutral flags: It takes away an abyss of energy - and mental energy as well.
Svitolina via Vogue

Svitolina particularly means that losses against Russian and Belarusian opponents hurt a lot given the current scenario, although she knows that losses are a part of the job. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Elina Svitolina has been pretty vocal about her stand on no handshake between Ukrainian and Russian/Belarusian athletes amid the current political turmoil between the two nations. The Ukrainian has also urged the WTA and ATP to formally allow Ukrainian tennis players the right to deny Russian or Belarusian players handshakes after the completion of a match. 

Svitolina recently visited her hometown of Odesa in Ukraine to meet her grandmother. She revealed that the nation faces severe power outages due to the rocket attacks. Although the situation is better now, the overall country is in ruins. 

Elina Svitolina reveals her dream to make Ukrainian tennis flourish

The 29-year-old also said in the interview that she has no plans to retire anytime soon. She revealed that she wanted to play for a maximum of 10 more years while also working towards her immediate next goal, which is to set up a fund to promote tennis in Ukraine with her husband Gael Monfils so that the sport can flourish in the nation. 

ADVERTISEMENT
Gael Monfils and Elina Svitolina
Gael Monfils and Elina Svitolina (Source: Tennis Now)

Talking about her retirement plan, Svitolina said:

I hope that then Gael and I will have a couple more children. And that I will continue to develop my fund, because Ukrainian tennis must flourish, and my mission is to make concrete efforts for this.

In case you missed it:

Was this article helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!