In a swift and firm response to Wimbledon’s decision to ban Russian and Belarusian athletes from this year’s competition, the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), which serves as the women’s tennis governing body, has announced that Wimbledon will be stripped of its ranking points.
Stripping the tournament of its ranking points makes this year’s Wimbledon event a showcase for women’s players.
Although WTA chief executive Steve Simon was not technically formally recommended, he formally recommended the idea earlier this week. His proposal is widely expected to be ratified before the end of the week by the WTA’s main board of directors and the players’ council.
The move was deemed a necessity after Wimbledon refused to change its stance on the Russian and Belarusian participants, prompting near-universal complaints. Among those who have expressed their displeasure are Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, who are arguably the two biggest names in the men’s circuit.
All ranking points are expected to be removed from Wimbledon by the ATP in the next 48 hours if it does not reverse the ban on Russian players.
– Sam Street (@samstreetwrites) May 11 2022
After the WTA made its decision, speculation surrounding the men’s tour – the ATP, began to surface. The idea of the ATP siding with the WTA and opting to strip Wimbledon’s ranking points is now a very real possibility.
When asked about this possibility, Djokovic replied: “Now I think the players’ board, the tour management, has to really decide together with the players what is the best solution in this situation, whether they keep the points, protect the points, or withdraw 50% of the points or whatever,” Djokovic said via Sportskeeda.
Nadal has also indicated that he is not opposed to points stripping. “The only thing we can do is reach out to Wimbledon and the rest of the ATP management to do the things that work best to protect every ATP player,” Nadal said, via USA Tennis World.
“Ultimately, this is our mission: to protect the players and to work for the benefit of every player we represent. That’s it.”
Wimbledon is scheduled to begin on Monday 27 June with players competing until Sunday 10 July.
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