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Politics won over sports? Wimbledon bans Russian and Belarusian players from The Championships

Final decision on the Russian and Belarusian players has been finally made by the Wimbledon organisers and it is not a good news for the players.

Daniil Medvedev, Aryna Sabalenka, Victoria Azarenka - Absentees from the 2022 Wimbledon

The 2022 Wimbledon Championships were in the conversation ever since the war in Ukraine broke out when Russian forces advanced into the Ukrainian borders with the objective of capturing the country. With the UK being a strong supporter of the European nation and the subsequent suspensions of the Russian and Belarusian tennis boards by ITF, ATP and WTA, the Championships were also brought into the conversation.

With the All-England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) independent to make a decision on whether or now to allow players, the committee seems to have made the final call that will see men’s World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev and women’s World No. 4 Aryna Sabalenka along with other stars being disallowed to play in the major this year when it begins on Monday, 27th June 2022.

With the annual press conference scheduled for the next week, the decision seems to have been taken in advance so that other issues and things could also be addressed at the press conference as this issue was bound to be taken up by the journalists. Top players that will be affected will include Andrey Rublev, Aslan Karatsev and 2-time Grand Slam champion and former World No. 1 Victoria Azarenka.

While the official deadline for players’ entry for the Championships is 16th May, the organising committee seems to have made the decision well in advance to avoid what happened in Australia with Novak Djokovic during the 2022 Australian Open.

While the official statement is yet to come which will further explain the things regarding how long the ban is and what happens if the war ends prior to the Championships. However, as of today, as per the reports in the New York Times and Dailymail UK, Russian and Belarusian players are not featuring in the 2022 Wimbledon Championships.

Wimbledon joins the list of troubled Grand Slams this season


After the entire fiasco in Australia at the start of the year, it was expected to be a smooth sail for other majors as they would take note of the points where things could go wrong. However, Wimbledon fails to avoid any controversy. While the French Open was also involved as they earlier planned to ban non-vaccinated players, the decline in Covid-19 cases in France has seen all players being allowed for the Roland Garros.

Similarly, so far, the US Open remains adamant about not allowing unvaccinated players for the Slam and also for all tennis events in the region during the entire season. With Wimbledon looking to be the most liberal and lenient major among all, the Championships are also now involved in a controversy.

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