ATP and WTA threaten British Tennis Federation with suspending their tournaments

ATP and WTA threaten British Tennis Federation with suspending their tournaments

December 7, 2022, 9:31 PM

December 7, 2022, 9:31 PM

The ATP and WTA threaten the British Tennis Federation (LTA) with suspending its male and female circuit tournaments if it does not authorize Russian and Belarusian tennis players to compete in 2023, whose participation has been prohibited since the invasion of Ukraine, the LTA said on Wednesday.

Alsothe ATP inflicted a fine of one million dollars (953,000 euros) to the LTA for excluding tennis players from the two countries last summer in retaliation for the war in Ukraine. This sanction was divided in parts of 200,000 dollars (190,000 euros) among the five affected tournaments: Queen’s, Eastbourne, and the Challengers of Surbiton, Nottingham and Ilkley.

For his part, the WTA also fined 750,000 dollars (713,000 euros) to the LTA (for its Nottingham, Birmingham and Eastbourne tournaments), and $250,000 (237,000 euros) to the All England Lawn Tennis Club, which organizes Wimbledon.

the LTA, “deeply disappointed”reproaches the ATP for its “astonishing lack of empathy for the situation in Ukraine and evident lack of understanding of the unique circumstances” it is facing.

“Let’s prepare our response and we await the outcome of our appeal against the WTA’s decision and sanction,” the LTA statement concluded.

On Wednesday afternoon, the ATP told AFP that it maintains its position: “We believe that the measure adopted protects the long-term future of our sport. and our commitment to the system of participation based on merit, without discrimination”.

For his part, the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, accused the British Government of violating the Olympic Charter, that guarantees the political neutrality of your institution.

“Make a decision, a political decision on sports competitions clearly disagrees with the resolutions and the commitments (of the Charter) and is not in accordance with the mission of international sport,” Bach said after a meeting of the IOC executive board in Lausanne.

“Governments should not decide for political reasons who should or should not participate in a certain sporting event,” he continued. “Participation in sporting events should be based on sporting merit and not on political considerations,” he insisted.

Wimbledon, which is independent of the ATP and WTA, He had also rejected the participation of Russian and Belarusian tennis players. In response, both organizations decided not to award any ranking points to the grass-court Grand Slam, which was not affected by the sanctions and fines imposed on the LTA.

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