Ukrainian Svitolina defeats Russian opponent she refused to play

Ukrainian Svitolina defeats Russian opponent she refused to play

Ukrainian tennis participant Elina Svitolina, decked out in the yellow and blue of her country’s flag, place on a clinic in opposition to her Russian opponent at the Monterrey Open up on Tuesday. She defeated Anastasia Potapova 6-2, 6-1 in the opening round of the event, a match that just a working day back she had refused to participate in

Svitolina, the 15th rated women’s tennis participant in the globe and the No. 1 seed at the Monterrey Open, had at first refused to participate in towards Potapova owing to Russia’s invasion of her home place. In a statement she unveiled on Monday, Svitolina (who married French tennis player Gael Monfils last calendar year) mentioned that she wouldn’t enjoy versus any Russian or Belarusian athletes till the ATP, WTA, and ITF followed the IOC’s direct, demanding them to compete as neutral athletes without the need of any flags or anthems.

“I consider the present-day circumstance needs a very clear situation from our corporations: ATP, WTA and ITF. As these types of, we — Ukrainian gamers — requested to ATP, WTA and ITF to comply with the recommendations of the IOC to settle for Russian or Belarussian [sic] nationals only as neutral athletes, devoid of exhibiting any nationwide symbols, colours, flags or anthems.

“Appropriately, I want to announce that I will not engage in tomorrow in Monterrey, nor any other match versus Russian or Belarussian [sic] tennis gamers until finally our organizations acquire this needed determination.

“I do not blame any of the Russian athletes. They are not liable for the invasion of our motherland. In addition, I desire to shell out tribute to all the gamers, primarily Russians and Belarussians, who bravely stated their placement against the war. Their support is crucial.”

All three companies verified on Tuesday that Russian and Belarusian gamers would be authorized to compete but only as neutral athletes, just like at the Olympics, which led Svitolina to engage in — and get — her initially spherical match against Potapova.

Tennis - WTA 250 - Monterrey Open - Club Sonoma, Monterrey, Mexico - March 1, 2022 Ukraine's Elina Svitolina celebrates after winning her first round match against Anasatsia Potapova REUTERS/Daniel Becerril

Elina Svitolina defeated her Russian opponent Anastasia Potapova at the Monterrey Open up right after initially refusing to perform in opposition to her. (REUTERS/Daniel Becerril)

Svitolina dedicates winnings to Ukraine

Immediately after the match, Svitolina instructed the media that the last couple of days have still left her with a great deal of feelings, but she never ever wavered from her motivation to enjoy well for her country.

“I was focused. I was on a mission for my nation,” she said. “From the beginning, it was crucial to be completely ready for everything that arrives my way.”

Svitolina of system desires to win the Monterrey Open, which she did back in 2020, but now she has added incentive. She strategies to send out her prize cash back again residence to Ukraine, which could be as considerably as $31,000 if she wins.

“All the prize dollars that I’m heading to generate is going to be for the Ukrainian army,” Svitolina reported.