Wimbledon Centre Court

Wimbledon release statement regarding disappearance of former champion Peng Shuai

Wimbledon have joined the calls requesting confirmation of the safety and well-being of Peng Shuai after her censorship following her sexual assault allegations.

Peng is a former Wimbledon doubles champion, winning the Grand Slam with doubles partner Hsieh Su-wei after the Asian duo defeated current women’s World number one Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua in the final.

Peng had not been seen or heard from publicly since November 2nd when she first accused former Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli of coercing her into a sexual relationship.

Peng originally made the allegations through Chinese social media website Weibo but her post was deleted just 20 minutes after being published.

Last week, Chinese state-affiliated media outlet CGTN released an email purportedly from Peng Shuai herself which claimed her allegations were false and that she was safe. However, WTA chief executive and chairman Steve Simon released a statement that said the email “only raised his concerns.”

Images and videos of Peng eating at a restaurant and attending a tennis event in Beijing have been released, but Steve Simon has said in another statement that whilst “it is positive to see her,” the videos are “insufficient” evidence.

The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) said in a statement posted on Twitter “we are united with the rest of tennis in the need to understand that Peng Shuai is safe.

“We have been working in support of the WTA’s effort to establish her safety through our relationships behind the scenes.

“Along with the global tennis community, we would like Peng Shuai to know that her wellbeing is of the utmost importance to us, and we will continue to work to gain clarity on her safety.”

The situation has also reached a global level as both the White House and the United Nations have echoed concerns over Peng Shuai’s well-being.

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.