ATP and WTA to ‘meet in Madrid’ to discuss Wimbledon ban
ATP and WTA are set for talks in Madrid this week to decide what is an appropriate response to the Wimbledon ban on Russian and Belarussian players, with the possibility of Wimbledon becoming an ‘exhibition event’.
On Wednesday, The All England Club (AELTC) and Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) announced that due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, players from the two European countries will not be allowed to compete at grass-court events in the United Kingdom, which includes Wimbledon.
The sanctions mean that the US Open champion and world number two Daniil Medvedev and world number four Aryna Sabalenka are not currently able to compete.
In addition to these top seeds, there are three more Russian men in the top 30 of the ATP rankings, and six Russian and Belarusian players in the top 32 of the WTA rankings who would have been seeds at Wimbledon.
The announcement was already condemned by the ATP, ITF and WTA, with the three organisations allowing Russian and Belarusian players to compete under a neutral flag.
WTA CEO Steve Simon also labelled the ban as “extremely disappointing” warning the LTA and the AELTC that their will be a ‘strong reaction’.
This reaction seems to be imminent as it was announced that the WTA and ATP are set to meet in order to discuss the possibility of Wimbledon becoming an ‘exhibition event’ with all the ranking points being taken away.
Tim Henman’s former strength and conditioning coach Kieron Vorster posted on his social media, “I hear the ATP and WTA are meeting in Madrid to discuss potentially taking away all ranking points from the Wimbledon championships this year so in essence turning it then into an exhibition event.”
Henman sits on the Wimbledon Committee, which adds credibility to Vorster’s claims, although it’s important to stress that nothing has yet been confirmed.
I hear the @atptour and @WTA are meeting in Madrid to discuss potentially taking away all ranking points from @Wimbledon championships this year so in essence turning it then into an exhibition event.
— Kieron Vorster (@vossy1973) April 24, 2022
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