Elina Svitolina has played incredible tennis in the last few years winning the biggest title of her career at the 2018 WTA Finals. When she is playing such good tennis one would expect her to play one of the biggest tournaments – The Olympics.
The 25-year old has been subject to many comments that claim she does not want to represent the Ukranian team. According to the rules set by the ITF she is required to play 3 ties in the Fed cup but she has only played 2. She was due to play a tie against Poland this year but withdrew before the match.
In an interview with btu.org.ua, the President of the Ukrainian Tennis Federation (FTU) said,”My personal opinion at the moment is that their agent is behind this, is opposed to playing for the Ukrainian national team. Playing for the country should be, in my opinion, an honour for every athlete.”
Elina Svitolina has responded to these comments in a recent interview. She said,“Yes, I plan to play in Tokyo and the situation is such that I need to play another (Fed Cup) match for the national team. But let’s just say that if the FTU does not need my help, then there are some other opportunities for qualifying for the Olympic tournament, since I am still a top player in women’s tennis.”
“I am always ready to play and play for the national team when I have physical capabilities, but it is difficult to do when there are health problems. There are a lot of matches in the subgroup, and to come and sit on the bench, I do not think this is right.” The world no.6 added.
Elina Svitolina was shocked at the attacks on her. She said,“For many years I played for Ukraine, so frankly, it was not clear to me why they attacked me so much, and from the Federation’s side, I don’t think it’s normal to attack a top player.”
Elina Svitolina represented Ukraine at the 2016 Olympics where she shocked Serena Williams. She will be looking to become the first Ukrainian to win a tennis gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.