Four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka was suspected of participating in Wimbledon on Monday, saying the decision by sports officials to remove the ranking points in the tournament on Monday diminished her motivation to play.
Last week Wimbledon took its ranking points, the men’s ATP and the women’s WTA, after Grasscourt decided to exclude players from Major Russia and Belarus from attacking Ukraine.
“I would say my mentality is going to grass. I’m not 100% sure if I will get there,” Osaka said at a news conference after his first round defeat. French Open on Monday.
“I’d love to go get some experience on the grass court, but at the same time, it’s kind of for me – I don’t want to say it’s meaningless, no pun intended, but I’m the type of player who is motivated by seeing my ranking go up.”
The ATP and WTA’s action was met with “deep disappointment” by the All England Lawn Tennis Club, who repeated their stance that the ban was the only viable option under the guidance of the British government.
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has said that Wimbledon will not be awarded ranking points for junior and wheelchair tennis events this year.
The AELTC’s decision to suspend Russian and Belarusian players at this year’s championships is the first time players have been excluded on the basis of nationality, with German and Japanese banned in the immediate aftermath of World War II.
World number one player Iga Svitek said she would be attending Wimbledon, but tennis administration appeals to unite to find a solution to the “tricky situation”.
“I think this is a very tricky situation, and for some people or players every solution is somehow wrong,” the Polish player said after an easy first-round win over Roland Garros.
“People who are responsible for making decisions, I think they all come together, so our sport is going to be one because, at present, I think it’s not one. We feel in the locker room, so it’s very hard.”
Sviatec expressed little sympathy for the Russian and Belarusian players.
“I know that not all Russian and Belarusian players are responsible for what’s happening in their country,” he said.
“But on the other hand, the sport has been used in politics and we are public figures and we have little influence on the people. It is good if the people who make the decisions are making decisions to prevent the Russian invasion. But it is a tricky one.”
This story was published by Wire Agency Feed without modification to the text.