Storm in the tennis world. “War is not politics!”

None of the tournaments followed in the footsteps of Wimbledon, which barred the Russians and Belarusians from participating. A dispute continues and representatives of the aggressor states participate in WTA and ATP competitions. – They do not understand the gravity of the situation – says Aleksander Kwasniewski.

Dawid Gora

Aleksander Kwasniewski

East News / Andrzej Iwanczuk / REPORTER / Pictured: Aleksander Kwaśniewski

The decisions against the Russians have already been taken by the French organizers of Roland Garros. Participants from a country that barbarously invaded Ukraine can participate in the prestigious tournament.

“Our discipline is based on the fundamental principles of sporting merit and fairness, according to which players individually compete to win a place in tournaments based on ATP rankings. We are convinced that the current Wimbledon and LTA decision to Banning tennis players from Russia and Belarus from this year’s podium on British grass pitches is unfair and could set a damaging precedent Discrimination on the basis of nationality is a violation of our agreement with Wimbledon, which states that the admission of players to the event depends solely on the ATP rankings,” ATP commented in an official statement.

In a similar, or even more expressive tone, the WTA said: “We are very disappointed with today’s decision by AELTC and LTA to exclude athletes from Russia and Belarus from participating in the upcoming UK grass court tournaments. professional tennis events, it is performance based and should not be subject to any form of discrimination…) is not fair or justifiable.”

The matter is clearly being commented on by Aleksander Kwaśniewski, former sports minister, chairman of the Polish Olympic Committee and president of Poland for ten years.

– There is a war that is a war of aggressors against innocent victims. Russia is the aggressor and the Ukrainians are the victims. Athletes, even though they are not involved in politics, must take a stand. If they had clearly condemned the war, I would have believed they would be allowed to participate. After all, they didn’t start the war. However, if they do not follow their opinion or even support Putin, the road must be closed to them. I say this with pain because sport should be free of politics. But here’s another important issue — war isn’t politics, like it or not — Kwaśniewski says in an interview with WP SportoweFakty.

The former president emphasizes that in this case it is not about the severity of the sanctions, but about the moral dimension.

– There is war and it must be clear which side you are on. Sport plays an important role in the Kremlin’s propaganda machine, Kwasniewski emphasizes.

The former president is aware that one of the duties of the WTA and ATP is to act in the interest of the sport, and especially the athletes. And in that sense one can understand the attitude of the activists. However, the time in which we live is no longer normal and it is impossible not to take it into account.

– It’s wartime. And it is a war that does not end, and may even escalate. These organizations should be aware of this. During the wars, the Olympic Games or the World Cup were not played. Although it was about world wars, even countries far from Europe perfectly understood the reason for this state of affairs. Meanwhile, WTA and ATP do not fully understand the gravity of the current situation, says Aleksander Kwasniewski.

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