"It really hurts and I don't understand how this can be possible": Kostyuk reacts to Russian flags being seen at Australian Open despite ban

A lot of controversy has swirled around the 2023 Australian Open and their handling of the situation regarding Russian flags with Srdjan Djokovic, the father of Novak the latest to be embroiled after being pictured with a flag.

This all despite Tennis Australia taking a stance to ban them after a prior incident at the start of the tournament in a Russian v Ukrainian WTA match.

Marta Kostyuk played both in the singles and latterly the doubles losing out alongside Romanian player, Elena-Gabriela Ruse and was quizzed about the flags flying and her thoughts as a Ukrainian on the ban not really being stuck to.

"It hurts a lot because there were specific rules, they were printed out outside that this is not allowed to bring flags," Kostyuk told reporters after bowing out of the women's doubles competition with Elena-Gabriela Ruse as per Reuters.

"It's not impossible, but you're not allowed to bring out the flags and so on. It really hurts that they were there for quite some time.

"They were there on the court, in the stands as well and I just don't understand as well. It really hurts and I don't understand how this can be possible."

"I know I will be hated for the rest of my life for saying this, but Novak has very aggressive fans because I know this and I have experienced this in the past," she continued.

As well the 20-year-old who has been one of many Ukrainian tennis stars who have spoken continuously throughout the war about banning Russian and Belarusian players would keep the prior ban for Wimbledon.

“I think yes. Because I cannot imagine if someone Russian or Belarusian wins the tournament and then royal family has to hold the trophies with them,” she said.

“I hardly imagine this. This is one of the big reasons they actually banned them. So I think yes.”

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