The trial of Georgian professional tennis player Nikoloz Basilashvili is about to begin very soon. The World No. 33 Basilashvili is currently facing charges of assaulting his ex-wife. Though he has denied all the charges pressed against him, the case has become a high-profile case of domestic violence and gained worldwide attention.
The 29-year-old Basilashvili got arrested in May 2020 when his ex-wife Neka Dorokashvili accused him of attacking her. Neka has even made her 5-year-old son the witness to all the mishappenings. If proven guilty, the Georgian tennis star could face up to three years in prison.
“It’s not just a case. It can change public perceptions and attitudes towards domestic violence,” said Ana Abashidze, Neka Dorokashvili’s lawyer.
At the first court appearance, there were speculations over whether the judges would straightaway go to trial or ask the prosecutor to submit more evidence.
Besides being a lawyer, Ana Abashidze is a women’s right campaigner as well. She believes that cases like this could deliver historic judgments which would also help other women to fight.
“If Basilashvili is convicted, it will send a very strong message. That domestic violence can occur at all levels of Georgian society and that it will not be tolerated regardless of the perpetrator or the victim,” concluded the lawyer.
Basilashvili’s lawyers have not replied to any of the statements. They have only claimed that all the allegations against him are fake and unsubstantiated. They hope to fight the battle legally. Basilashvili is undoubtedly one of Georgia’s most successful tennis player. The 28-year-old has won three ATP titles and more than $5 million in prize money.
The case has certainly created a dissidence in the people of Georgia. While some believe that the player is innocent, others are of the opinion that he should be suspended immediately from tennis. According to the United Nations and Georgia’s National Statistics Office, one in seven Georgian women experiences domestic violence. This is the reason that the outrage is quite big and clear in this case.