Russian and Belarusian tennis players will not be allowed to compete at the world’s most prominent tennis tournament this year due to the brutal and unprovoked war of aggression Russia is currently waging in Ukraine.
The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club issued a statement today, formally announcing its decision to bar participants from Russia and Belarus after widespread reports about a looming ban for players from the two countries.
“Given the profile of The Championships in the United Kingdom and around the world, it is our responsibility to play our part in the widespread efforts of Government, industry, sporting and creative institutions to limit Russia’s global influence through the strongest means possible,” the organization said in its statement.
“In the circumstances of such unjustified and unprecedented military aggression, it would be unacceptable for the Russian regime to derive any benefits from the involvement of Russian or Belarusian players with The Championships.
“It is therefore our intention, with deep regret, to decline entries from Russian and Belarusian players to The Championships 2022,” it added.
As a private members’ club, the All England Club can impose sanctions independently of the ITF, WTA and ATP, and reportedly without fear of legal repercussions.
The Wimbledon ban means the likes of men’s world number two Daniil Medvedev and fellow Russian top-10 star Andrey Rublev will both be forced to miss the SW19 showpiece, which gets underway on June 27 and runs until July 10.
Russian women’s world number 15 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova will also be ruled out, as will Belarusian world number four Aryna Sabalenka and Victoria Azarenka, who is a two-time Grand Slam winner.