Novak Djokovic condemns Wimbledon’s ban on Russian tennis players | War news between Russia and Ukraine

Wimbledon announced the ban in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Tennis star Novak Djokovic has called a ban on Russian and Belarusian players at Wimbledon “crazy”.

His criticism on Thursday came a day after the world’s oldest tennis tournament announced the measure, in light of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

Wimbledon, which is based in the United Kingdom, became the first tennis tournament to prevent individual participants from the two countries from participating in the ongoing conflict.

Djokovic told reporters at the Serbia Open that he “cannot support the Wimbledon decision”.

“I think it’s crazy,” he added. “If politics interfere with sports, the result is not good.”

However, he added that he “will always condemn war, I will never support war, because I am a child of war myself… I know how much emotional trauma it leaves behind. In Serbia we all know what happened in 1999. We have had many wars in recent history in the Balkans.”

The ban means the world’s number two, Daniil Medvedev of Russia and fourth place in women, Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, will not participate in the competition from June 27 to July 10.

Ian Hewitt, chairman of the All England Club, said on Wednesday: “We recognize that this is hard on the affected individuals, and it is with sadness that they will suffer for the actions of the leaders of the Russian regime.”

Djokovic has not shied away from controversy throughout his professional career, most recently during a public confrontation with Australian officials over his refusal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

The tennis player was also criticized in September 2021 for dining with Milan Jolovic, a former commander of the infamous paramilitary unit Drina Wolves, which took part in the genocide against Bosniaks in Srebrenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Jolovic is celebrated by many Serbs for saving the life of convicted war criminal Ratko Mladic during the war in Bosnia in the early 1990s.

A UN court found Mladic guilty of genocide and war crimes in Bosnia in 2017 and sentenced him to life imprisonment.

Before dinner, Djokovic was also seen singing at a wedding in Bosnia with Bosnian Serb president, Milorad Dodik, a well-known genocide denier who regularly advocates the secession of the Bosnian Serb entity, Republika Srpska, from the country.

Leave a Comment