— Published 3 April 2023

Wimbledon reopens its doors to Russians and Belarusians

The parenthesis is closed. The organizers of the Wimbledon tournament announced at the end of last week to accept “conditionally” the participation of Russian and Belarusian players in the next edition of the British stage of the Grand Slam, scheduled from July 3 to 16, 2023. The London tournament will thus align itself with the policy adopted since the beginning of the conflict in Ukraine by the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Flushing Meadows. “Our current intention is to accept the participation of Russian and Belarusian players provided they compete as “neutral” athletes and meet the appropriate conditions, said a statement from the All England Lawn Tennis Club. We still fully condemn the illegal invasion by Russia and maintain our strong support for the people of Ukraine.” Russian and Belarusian players will be prohibited from expressing support for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In addition, the tournament reserves the right to refuse the participation of players “receiving financial support” from Russia or Belarus. As a reminder, Wimbledon had banned last year Russians and Belarusians under pressure from British authorities. This decision had caused him not to be able to award points for the ATP and WTA rankings. The two professional organizations welcomed, Friday, March 31, the British decision. “We are pleased that all players can participate in Wimbledon and other LTA (British Tennis Federation) tournaments this summer,” said the ATP and WTA in a joint statement. On the other hand, the Ukrainian government condemned the decision of the London organizers, calling it “immoral”. The head of Ukrainian diplomacy, Dmytro Kouleba, asked the British government “to refuse to issue visas to players” Russian and Belarusian.