WTA Issues A Statement Regarding Handshake Snubs Of Ukrainian Players

WTA Issues A Statement Regarding Handshake Snubs Of Ukrainian Players

by Evita Mueller

Last updated

After Elina Svitolina urged the tennis Tours to release statements on why there aren't handshakes between Ukranian and Russian and Belarusian players, the WTA issued one.

The match between Elina Svitolina and Victoria Azarenka was a superb match that finished in a dramatic match tiebreak which Svitolina won 11-9. Unfortunately, the match itself isn't the story as the lack of customary handshake is the story.

Elina Svitolina announced before the match that she wouldn't shake hands with Azarenka after their match and she didn't. The crowd didn't react positively to that booing Azarenka as she was leaving the court which left all the involved disappointed.

We've seen that happen at the French Open though many hoped that it wouldn't carry over in London. Svitolina expressed in the same interview admitting that she hopes to avoid booes from the crowd. After it ultimately happened Svitolina urged the governing bodies and tennis Tours to issue statements so fans understand why it's happening.

She was backed by Aryna Sabalenka in that regard while Daniil Medvedev argued that the booes come because people simply don't know. As crazy as it sounds, he might be right which is why the WTA acted upon the plea of Svitolina and released a statement. We carry it fully.

Following the unfortunate circumstances and misunderstanding in yesterday’s match at @Wimbledon (along with other matches the past several weeks), the WTA would like to provide clarity around post-match handshakes.

Due to the ongoing reprehensible war, the WTA respects the position of the Ukrainian athletes in foregoing the tradition of shaking opponents’ hands (from Russia and Belarus) at the end of a match, as this is a personal decision. We have some of the best fans in the world and are grateful for their passion and dedication, and we thank them for their understanding and respect for the athletes.

We've yet to see similar statements as Wimbledon declined to issue one arguing that the crowd in London is 'knowledgeable'. It's also unclear whether this will have any effect as Svitolina is playing Swiatek in the next round and they have a good bond after staging a charity fundraiser for Ukraine together.


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