Tennis

Russian, Belarusian gamers allowed to compete at US Open

(FILES) In this file photo taken on August 31, 2021 an overview shows Arthur Ashe Stadium during the 2021 US Open Tennis tournament men's singles first round match between Serbia's Novak Djokovic (bottom) and Denmark's Holger Rune at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York. - Players from Russia and Belarus will be allowed to compete in the 2022 US Open, but only under a neutral flag, the US Tennis Association announced June 14, 2022. (Photo by ANGELA  WEISS / AFP)

(FILES) On this file photograph taken on August 31, 2021 an outline exhibits Arthur Ashe Stadium through the 2021 US Open Tennis match. (Photograph by ANGELA WEISS / AFP)

Russian and Belarusian gamers can be allowed to compete on the U.S. Open this yr however solely as neutrals, the US Tennis Affiliation (USTA) introduced on Tuesday, a choice that stands in stark distinction to Wimbledon which banned them.

Wimbledon’s transfer to ban them from the match which begins later this month prompted the lads’s ATP and girls’s WTA Excursions to strip the grasscourt Grand Slam of its rating factors.

Wimbledon’s choice prevents gamers comparable to males’s world primary Daniil Medvedev of Russia from enjoying on the All England Garden Tennis Membership (AELTC) however the USTA mentioned Russian and Belarusian gamers can be welcome at Flushing Meadows.

“Alongside the opposite Grand Slams, the ITF, the ATP and the WTA, the USTA, which owns and operates the US Open, has beforehand condemned, and continues to sentence, the unprovoked and unjust invasion of Ukraine by Russia,” the USTA mentioned.

“The USTA … supported the banning of the Russian and Belarusian Tennis Federations from the ITF, and due to this fact all worldwide group competitions, and the directive for gamers from these international locations to play below a impartial flag when competing outdoors of worldwide group competitions.”

The USTA’s choice will permit Medvedev to defend his maiden Grand Slam title after he beat Novak Djokovic within the last final yr to disclaim the Serb a calendar yr Grand Slam.

AELTC Chairman Ian Hewitt mentioned in April that British authorities steerage didn’t permit gamers to compete at Wimbledon primarily based on their rankings.

He mentioned there have been two accessible choices — declining entries, or permitting entries however solely with particular written declarations from particular person gamers, including that they made the “most accountable choice potential within the circumstances”.

“We acknowledge that every group has needed to take care of distinctive circumstances that have an effect on their choices,” the USTA added.

“Based mostly on our personal circumstances, the USTA will permit all eligible gamers, no matter nationality, to compete on the 2022 U.S. Open.”

Gamers from Russia and Belarus had been allowed to play on the French Open too.

The ATP and WTA have themselves banned Russia and Belarus from worldwide group competitions following the invasion, which Moscow calls a ‘particular operation’, however allowed gamers from the 2 international locations to compete as neutrals.

Ukrainian participant Sergiy Stakhovsky slammed the choice, writing on Twitter: “You can’t put a price ticket on with the ability to reside with your self. I salute Wimbledon, the one entity which has an ethical code.”

The primary draw on the U.S. Open begins on Aug. 29.

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