Elina Svitolina on Wimbledon reportedly ending Russian ban: Very sad, not fair play


Elina Svitolina says it is “very sad” if the Wimbledon organizers have indeed decided to allow Russian players to return to The Championships in 2023.

On Thursday, Matt Hughes of The Daily Mail reported that Wimbledon decided to lift the ban imposed on Russian and Belarusian players.

According to the report, Russian and Belarusian players will be allowed to return to Wimbledon in 2023 but showing support to Vladimir Putin or the invasion in any way will result in expulsion from the tournament. 

“It’s not supposed to be like this in my opinion, what Wimbledon did last year (banning players from Russia and Belarus) was the right decision. If that has been changed this year it’s very sad because the war is still terrible, the Russian army is still killing a lot of innocent people. It is not fair play,” Svitolina told Mike Dickson The Daily Mail.

Svitolina also believes Russian athletes should be banned from the Olympics

In January, the IOC revealed its plans to allow Russian and Belarusian athletes to compete at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

On her social media, Svitolina posted a lengthy message explaining why it would be the wrong thing to do. 

“The Olympics are the biggest dream and ultimate privilege for athletes. They are the largest platform for inclusion and diversity in sports, capturing the attention of the world. With this in mind we must stick to banning Russian and Belarusian athletes, sending a strong message worldwide, that we are united in the sanctions imposed against Russia and Belarus and that there are consequences for the heinous acts of their governments; their lives cannot continue as normal and the world, nor the Russian or Belarusian people can be ignorant of the atrocities they are committing in Ukraine. Volodymyr Androshchuk, one of Ukraine’s rising stars in track & field, was sadly killed in action. He will never fulfill his potential or dreams at the games, so why should Russian and Belarusian athletes get their chance when their governments are robbing innocent people and athletes of their chance?!!” Svitolina wrote in a message she posted on February 1st.

Meanwhile, Svitolina has started training again and she is expected to return to tennis at some point in 2023.

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