Wimbledon, the world’s oldest and widely regarded most prestigious Grand Slam tournament, has lifted its ban on Russian and Belarusian players. In this season’s Wimbledon edition, Russian and Belarusian players can participate after being barred from doing so in 2022.
Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in the early months of 2022, the Grand Slam tournament decided to ban all Russian and Belarusian players from competing in the Grand Slam tournament. However, following various criticisms from around the world, the All England Club lifted its ban.
They have, however, also issued strict conditions for the respective players to follow. Players will compete under a neutral flag and are aware that they will be disqualified from the competition if they demonstrate any support for the invasion.
Soon after the news broke, tennis fans reacted to it and expressed their opinions on social media regarding the same.
One Twitter user pointed out that there was absolutely no change in the tension between Russia and Ukraine. Hence, by overturning their ban, the tournament just ‘admitted’ that their decision in 2022 was wrong.
“The situation with Russia and Ukraine is pretty much the same now as it was then. So Wimbledon are basically admitting that the decision last year was wrong?”
Another fan credited the ATP and the WTA for influencing this decision. Following Wimbledon’s ban on Russian and Belarusian players, the Grand Slam was stripped of their ranking points, which indirectly forced them to overturn their ban.
“The atp and wta deserve major props for basically forcing them to do this, the removal of ranking points was an excellent strategy even though it hurt the tour/players in the short run.”
Another fan questioned Wimbledon’s condition of showing support for Russia and their actions by saying no one has ever done that.
“Guys, did any of them EVER show any form of support to Putin ?…….or is it just that you’re pissed off because you had to give in, and want to show it ?
Fans continued to troll the Major for imposing the ban last year.
“So what was achieved by the ridiculous ban last year? Will those players be compensated? Will the players who got ‘nil points’ get some points retroactively? Nope.”
Below are a few more fan reactions:
Wimbledon 2023 to commence on July 3
The 136th edition of the London Majors will commence on July 3, Monday, and end on July 16, Sunday.
Last year, World No. 1 Novak Djokovic won the seventh Wimbledon title of his career. In the summit clash, the Serbian beat Nick Kyrgios. Elena Rybakina won the women’s singles by beating Ons Jabuer in the final. The win was the Moscow-born player’s maiden Grand Slam victory.
Following the overturning of the ban, former World No. 1 Daniil Medvedev, World No. 7 Andrey Rublev, and the Australian Open 2023 winner Aryna Sabalenka are all set to ply their trade at the 2023 Wimbledon Championship.