Daniil Medvedev, of Russia ,returns a shot from Andy Murray, of Britain, during the Miami Open tennis tournament, Saturday, March 26, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (Wilfredo Lee/AP)
| April 20, 2022, 8:25 AM
LONDON — Tennis players from Russia and Belarus will not be allowed to play at Wimbledon this year because of the war in Ukraine, the All England Club announced Wednesday.
Among the prominent players affected by the ban are reigning U.S. Open champion Daniil Medvedev, who recently reached No. 1 in the ATP rankings and is currently No. 2; men’s No. 8 Andrey Rublev; Aryna Sabalenka, who was a Wimbledon semifinalist in 2021 and is No. 4 in the WTA rankings; Victoria Azarenka, former women’s No. 1 who has won the Australian Open twice; and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the French Open runner-up last year.
Wimbledon begins on June 27.
Russian athletes have been banned from competing in many sports following their country’s invasion of Ukraine. Belarus has aided Russia in the war.
The French Open, the second Grand Slam, has Russian and Belarusian players on its entry list.
The story continued to unfold on Wednesday when several Ukrainian players, including world No. 25 Elina Svitolina, put out a joint statement on social media calling for other tournaments to ban Russians and Belarusians if they don’t answer specific questions.
The statement calls for Russians and Belarusians to be asked if they support the invasion and military activities in Ukraine.
If they do not answer no, the statement calls for the players to be banned from all tournaments.