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Russian, Belarusian players allowed to compete at Wimbledon as neutrals

Russian, Belarusian players allowed to compete at Wimbledon as neutrals
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The All England Lawn Tenis Club announces that Russian and Belarusian players can compete as neutrals at this year's Wimbledon under certain conditions.

The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) has announced that Russian and Belarusian players will be allowed to compete at Wimbledon this year under certain conditions.

Following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, who have been supported by Belarus, athletes from the two nations were barred from taking part in the Grand Slam event last year.

Wimbledon was subsequently stripped of its ranking points, and with Russian and Belarusian players not allowed to compete at other grass-court events in the UK, the WTA and ATP fined the LTA a total of £1.4m.

However, players from the countries will be given the green light to participate at Wimbledon if they can prove that they are not financially assisted by the state - or any of its affiliated companies - and do not express any form of support for Russia and Belarus' leaders or regimes.

Tournaments held at Queen's, Eastbourne, Nottingham and Birmingham in the build-up to the Grand Slam event are also covered by the conditions.

A statement from AELTC chairman Ian Hewitt read: "We continue to condemn totally Russia's illegal invasion and our wholehearted support remains with the people of Ukraine.

"This was an incredibly difficult decision, not taken lightly or without a great deal of consideration for those who will be impacted."

With last year's ban being lifted, reigning Australian Open champion Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus can compete for another major title in 2023, while Daniil Medvedev, Andrey Rublev and Daria Kasatkina are among the top-10 players able to feature.

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Daniil Medvedev reacts at the Australian Open on January 30, 2022
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