Ukraine war burdens classic: Djokovic criticizes Russian ban in Wimbledon

The Russian and Belarusian tennis pros are missing from the grass classic in Wimbledon, and there are no world ranking points for the participants.

Ukraine war burdens classic: Djokovic criticizes Russian ban in Wimbledon

The Russian and Belarusian tennis pros are missing from the grass classic in Wimbledon, and there are no world ranking points for the participants. Several stars do not understand this. A Ukrainian, on the other hand, is happy about "encouraging signals".

The war of aggression against Ukraine also overshadowed the anticipation of the start of the tournament in Wimbledon. The discussions about the exclusion of Russian and Belarusian professionals continue, the tennis world remains divided - and the criticism of the All England Club's decision is clear.

He was "a child of war," says Novak Djokovic, "several wars in the 1990s even," but he couldn't support the ban on his colleagues: "None of them support the war." The exclusion was "not fair" for him, said the defending champion from Serbia. The six-time champion, who officially opens the tournament on Center Court against South Korean Kwon Soonwoo, is also trying to understand the organizers' perspective. "It's difficult to say what's right or wrong," he said.

The Australian Nick Kyrgios also thinks the ban "is not a good idea". It was "strange" that world number one Daniil Medvedev was missing. Djokovic would welcome the compromise of only allowing Russians and Belarusians to compete under a neutral flag, as they did recently at the French Open or on the tour. At least the withdrawal of world ranking points by the ATP and the WTA is wrong for Andy Murray. "I don't know who that helps," said the two-time Wimbledon winner from Great Britain: "All the players are here, I don't see how that will help the ATP."

In an interview with the "Süddeutsche Zeitung", the Ukrainian ex-professional Sergej Stachowski expressly praised the attitude of the All England Club. "It's encouraging what signals Wimbledon is sending to Ukraine. Nothing should be more important than human life - Wimbledon makes that clear," Stachowski said. "Wimbledon has shown, and always has been, that it is bigger than all the players. Wimbledon always leads the way in terms of fairness, in terms of modernity. But it remains true to its tradition, they give value to tradition. Wimbledon combines aristocracy and morality."

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