February 20, 2024

Open Court

MORE TENNIS THAN YOU'LL EVER NEED

Opinions run the full spectrum about the decision by the All-England Club and the LTA to ban players from Russia and Belarus from participating in its events until further notice.

We’re not getting into that here; still gathering intel and processing this potentially rather divisive decision by the AELTC.

But the notion that it’s Daniil Medvedev, Andrey Rublev and Aryna Sabalenka who will be affected by this, is to greatly underplay the situation.

And the WTA players are disproportionately affected – some 11 of the players you would expect in the Wimbledon main draw won’t be allowed to play.

That’s nearly 10 per cent.

But it goes beyond that, because it’s not just about Wimbledon.

The ban, with the LTA decision, also affects all the tuneup events in the U.K. – Queen’s Club, Eastbourne, Nottingham.

And, logically, it will affect the tournaments in Germany and the Netherlands. Because those players will look to those countries to play grass events even if they don’t end up playing Wimbledon.

It’s that, or they miss an entire month of the season.

ITF players, juniors also affected

The ban also effects the ITF tournaments (a couple of big ones, in the case of the women). It also affects the juniors, the wheelchair players, and senior players from those two countries.

It also affects the players in the Wimbledon qualifying – again, disproportinately on the women’s side.

As well, it also affects the doubles partners of those players. Because they will have to scramble to try to find a substitute to partners many have had all year.

Here’s a list of the affected players. It’s not exact, because Wimbledon is still two months away. But it’s a good representation.

(For Wimbledon, we’re using the entry lists for Roland Garros – the singles entry lists, and the preliminary qualifying and doubles lists – as a guide, since things won’t change that much in a few weeks. We’ve cut off the qualifying rankings at No. 250.

We’ve also included the top-100 juniors on the boys’ and girls’ side, even if not all of them would have played junior Wimbledon. Twelve of the top 100 junior girls are from Russia or Belarus.

There are a number of wheelchair tournaments as well, but only a couple of top-50 ranked players in that discipline. So we didn’t include them).

WTA Tour

Singles main draw

Aryna Sabalenka
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
Victoria Azarenka
Daria Kasatkina
Veronika Kudermetova
Liudmila Samsonova
Ekaterina Alexandrova
Aliaksandra Sasnovich
Varvara Gracheva
Anna Kalinskaya
Kamilla Rakhimova

Singles qualifying

Dubai
Anastasia Potapova

Vitalia Diatchenko
Anastasia Potapova
Anna Blinkova
Elina Avanesyan
Anastasia Gasanova
Anastasia Tikhonova
Olga Govortsova
Valeria Savinykh
Marina Melnikova
Yuliya Hatouka
Anastasiya Komardina

Doubles

Veronika Kudermetova (with Mertens)
Liudmila Samsonova (with Rybakina)
Ekaterina Alexandrova (with Laura Siegemund)
Anna Blinkova / Aliaksandra Sasnovich
Anna Kalinskaya (with Ana Konjuh)

ATP Tour

Chatrier
Aslan Karatsev

Singles main draw

Daniil Medvedev
Andrey Rublev
Karen Khachanov
Aslan Karatsev
Ilya Ivashka

Singles qualifying

Roman Safiullin
Egor Gerasimov
Evgeny Donskoy
Andrey Kuznetsov

Doubles (based on ATP rankings)

Andrei Vasilevski

WTA grass-court tournaments
(early entries)

Eastbourne

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
Oksana Selekhmeteva

Birmingham

Anna Kalinskaya (2nd choice)
Elina Avanesyan
Anastasia Gasanova (2nd choice)

Nottingham

Olga Govortsova

ITF tournaments

Week of April 24: W25 / M25 Nottingham
Week of May 2: W25 / M25 Nottingham
Week of May 9 – W25 / M25 Nottingham
Week of May 30 – W100 Surbiton
Week of June 13 – W100 Ilkley

Top 100 juniors

Girls

Diana Schnaider

5- Diana Shnaider
7 – Ksenia Kaytseva
18 – Yaroslava Bartashevich
23 – Mira Andreeva
48 – Ekaterina Khayrutidinova
49 – Elena Pridankina
64 – Anastasiia Gureva
66 – Evialina Laskevich
69 – Anna Kyryanova
71 – Erika Andreeva
76 – Alevtina Ibragimova
100 – Maria Sholokhova

Boys

22 – Yaroslav Demin
46 – Eric Arutiunian
62 – Artur Kukasian
82 – Konstantin Zhzhenov
88 – Mikhail Gorokhov
89 – Maxim Zhukov
97- Danil Planarian

Officials, support staff treated differently

Notable in the finer print of the LTA’s statement is the fact that this ban doesn’t necessarily affect non-playing personnel.

“Russian and Belarusian nationals who are not playing in events but who are involved in other official capacities (such as officials or player support), will be subject to the Government guidance requirement,” the statement says.

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