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HomeNewsAndrey Rublev: Russian tennis star says Wimbledon ban 'illogical' and 'discriminatory'

Andrey Rublev: Russian tennis star says Wimbledon ban ‘illogical’ and ‘discriminatory’


The Belarusian Tennis Federation (BTF) also issued a statement opposing the ban, saying it would seek a legal opinion on the decision which “will only incite hatred and intolerance on the basis of of nationality”.

Rublev, after beating Jiri Lehecka to advance to the Serbian Open quarter-finals in Belgrade on Thursday, told reporters at a post-match press conference that he and other players had a call with the organizers of Wimbledon on Wednesday to try to find a solution.

“To be honest, the reasons they give don’t make sense, there’s no logic for what they’re proposing,” Rublev said.

Rublev, who wrote ‘No war please’ on a camera during a match days after Russia invaded Ukraine in late February, said he was offered a Wimbledon d to have “at least a chance to choose whether we want to play or whether we don’t”. I don’t want to play.”

“And if there is a declaration that we have to sign and in addition to giving all the prize money to humanitarian aid, to families who are suffering, to children who are suffering,” he continued, “I I think this decision will at least do something, at least a little, and it will show that the English government stands for peace and really wants to help.

Rublev concluded his statement Thursday to reporters as he opened it: reaffirming his apolitical status.

“At the end of the day, we want to be competitive,” Rublev said. “We’re not here to talk about politics because I have no idea, anything about it. At the end of the day, I’m Russian, and I was born in Russia and I’ve lived all my life in Russia, and I just want to show that we are good people.”

The decision by the All-England Lawn Tennis Club (AETLC) to ban Russian and Belarusian players affects several top players. Besides Rublev, ranked No. 8 in men’s singles, his compatriots No. 2 Daniil Medvedev, No. 26 Karen Khachanov and No. 30 Aslan Karatsev are currently banned from competition.

On the women’s side, Belarusian #4 Aryna Sabalenka and #18 Victoria Azarenka as well as Russian #15 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, #26 Daria Kasatkina and #29 Veronika Kudermetova are affected.

Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus is the highest ranked women's singles player to be affected by the ban.

The AELTC justified its decision as a way to “limit Russia’s global influence by the most powerful means possible”, following the invasion of Moscow and the ongoing war in Ukraine.

The ATP and WTA Tours criticized the decision, although the AELTC said it would “review and react accordingly” if circumstances change by June.


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