Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal as well as the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) have come under fire after it emerged that Wimbledon and other grass-court events in the UK could lose ranking points over the decision to ban Russian and Belarusian players.
The decision from the All England Club (AELTC) and Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) to ban players from Russia and Belarus from all events in the UK following Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine has been criticised.
The likes of world No 1 Novak DjokovicNadal and Martina Navratilova have slammed AELTC and the LTA while the ATP and their women’s counterparts, the WTAalso voiced their unhappiness.
Earlier this week it was reported that the ATP Players Council voted to recommend stripping Wimbledon and other UK events of ranking points with the decision still needing to be ratified by the ATP Board.
Rafael Nadal on rumors Wimbledon will lose ranking points over Russia ban
Nadal was asked about the rumors in Rome on Wednesday and was non-committal, saying: “I don’t have a clear opinion on that, so I prefer to not give you a clear answer. And that’s it.
“There are some private conversations on the council about this kind of stuff, something that honestly I think it’s not good to (make) public.”
However, the chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Russia Chris Bryant MP called on two of tennis’ icons, Federer and Nadal, to state where they stand while he also slammed the ATP.
“Federer and Nadal should come clean. Do they want Vladimir Putin to fail or don’t they care?” he said.
“The men’s tour are behaving appallingly. It’s like they haven’t heard what is happening in Ukraine or don’t care.”
Should the ATP and WTA go through with the move to strip ranking points from the likes of Queen’s, Nottingham and Birmingham, then Great Britain’s top players, including Andy Murray and Emma Raducanu, could skip the UK events in the build-up to Wimbledon.