Current world number one Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka believes that she has done nothing wrong to any Ukrainian player for being treated the wrong way.
The two European neighbours are going through an armed conflict which started back in February last year, resulting in death on both sides.
It is because of this reason some players from Ukraine have openly decided to not shake hands with the players from Russia and Belarus.
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During the 2023 BNP Paribas Open, another such incident took place where Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko withdrew from the competition without facing Sabalenka.
The player later revealed that one of the reasons why she opted not to face the top-ranked player was because of her nationality.
Sabalenka addressed that issue while talking to the media and stated that she has the belief in not doing anything wrong to any Ukrainian player.
"Nobody can control emotions of others, you know. And I think WTA are doing their best to kind of control it,” she said. “Yeah, of course it's a lot of tension between us. I mean, I'm still have this belief that I did nothing bad to Ukraines; not me, not Russian athletes, not Belarusian athletes, not one of us did something bad. Even some of us are like helping. Like not like, how to say, publicly, yes.
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"So what else I can say? I think WTA are doing really great job to support both sides, and whatever -- I mean, I cannot control their emotions. I was through so many bad things, and unfortunately, I'm not able to say that because who gonna believe Belarusian girl. I mean, talking about her coach. I have been through also through hell, and I understand that... I don't know.
"Yeah, I mean, I think Tsurenko withdraw, there was more than panic attack or more than political situation. I think there is something more. I had really tough situation last year with her coach the way he act to me. So I think that guy put so much pressure on her, and that's why that happen.”