‘You Have the Right To Do So’- Alexander Bublik Contradicts Novak Djokovic’s Take on Wimbledon Banning Russian and Belarusian Players

Published 04/29/2022, 12:54 PM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 31, 2021 Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik in action during his first round match against Russia’s Danil Medvedev REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Wimbledon recently announced that they would not allow players from Russia or Belarus to compete at the tournament. There have been various takes on this announcement. Several elite players and members of the tennis fraternity have criticized this unilateral decision in the context of the geopolitical condition of the world right now.

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World no. 32 Alexander Bublik also opened up about this and shared his opinions about this incident.

Alexander Bublik does not want to judge

He said that tournament organisers have the right to ban players from the event, but he sympathised with the fans who would miss out on some great matches seeing how some of the top players in both the ATP and the WTA circuit are from Russia and Belarus.

 

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The 24-year-old who won his first ATP title this year at the Open Sud de France in Montpellier, by defeating Alexander Zverev said that, unlike popular belief, the players are not really exchanging ideas about the ban. He however reiterated the point made by Novak Djokovic and said that it was his belief that tennis should not become a scapegoat of politics, as that destroys the sanctity of the sport.

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“For me, sport is also a distraction from normal life, if you will – and no sport should be mixed up too much with politics… It’s all about getting comfortable with a beer in front of the TV and following your favourite player or team. It’s a great pity for the fans that this is now limited,” Bublik said.

Bublik also discussed his denounced Russian citizenship

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Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia – January 19, 2022. Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik in action during his second-round match against France’s Gael Monfils. REUTERS/Morgan Sette

Alexander Bublik himself was born in Russia, but in 2016, he renounced his Russian citizen to become a Kazhak citizen. He said that it was because the Kazakhstan Tennis Federation gave him more opportunities and support; which apparently the Russian Tennis Federation did not. In the exclusive interview with Eurosport, he also said that he was proud to represent Kazakhstan, the country where he was born.

“I no longer have a Russian passport, because two citizenships are not allowed,” he added. Bublik also said, “I have no connection with the tennis federation in Russia. I am a Kazakh and have been playing for the country for almost six years. I am proud to represent Kazakhstan.”

WATCH THIS STORY: From Locker Room Fight to Deportation: Biggest Australian Open 2022 Controversies

Given the current situation, the future of the Russian and Belarusian players is hanging in the balance as more and more tournaments are contemplating their policies. Here’s hoping that world politics does not impact these players’ chances at personal success, irrespective of where they are from.

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Rishma Banerjee

321 articles

Rishma Banerjee is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having done her masters in Political Science with International Relations from Jadavpur University, Rishma's outlet from the hustle-bustle of academics has always been sports, especially Tennis. A die-hard fan of Rafael Nadal, she admires his grit, determination and dedication towards always being better. When not writing content for firms dealing with fintech to social media marketing to sports, she finds herself in journals and books dealing with geopolitics and strategic studies or scrolling endlessly through Tumblr!

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