"There's a reason": Belarus' top seed unexpectedly supported Svitolina. She was setting up a set-up for the Ukrainian
Belarusian top-ranked Arina Sobolenko supported Elina Svitolina's call for international tennis organisations to make it official that Ukrainian women refuse to shake hands with representatives of aggressor countries. The winner of the Australian Open 2023 complained that the fans unfairly booed the athletes because of the ambiguity of the situation.
Sobolenko said this at a press conference after defeating Russian Alena Alexandrova in the fourth round of Wimbledon 2023, Metro portal reports. The tennis player from Belarus added that the audience needs to be explained what is happening and to justify the decision of the Ukrainians.
"This is a really difficult situation. I agree with Elina Svitolina that someone should announce on social media that there will be no handshakes so that players don't leave the court with such a hatred. There should probably be an announcement before the match about handshakes. I mean, it would be nice if the public really knew what was going on. There is a reason for the lack of handshakes," Sobolenko said.
We would like to remind you that Elina Svitolina reached the quarter-finals of Wimbledon 2023 by beating Victoria Azarenka of Belarus. The Ukrainian did not shake hands with her opponent after the game, and the fans booed Victoria. The representative of Belarus was outraged that the media focused on the behaviour of the fans.
At Roland Garros 2023, Arina Sobolenko staged a provocation after her match with Svitolina, forcing the audience to boo the Ukrainian.
As OBOZREVATEL previously reported, a well-known Russian figure skating coach Tatyana Tarasova said that Elina Svitolina deliberately makes anti-Russian statements out of fear of her compatriots. And fans from the Russian Federation were angry because of the Ukrainian tennis player's success.