Taking cognizance of a complaint by the Ukraine ambassador to Australia, Tennis Australia banned the flags of Russia and Belarus at the ongoing Australian Open. Russian and Belarus players were already playing under a neutral flag but the audiences were allowed to bring the flags. But now there is a total ban on Russian and Belarus flags.
• Tennis Australia bans Russian and Belarus flags onsite at the tournament
• Earlier fans were allowed to bring the flags but couldn’t display
• On Monday, a Russian flag was sighted by the Ukrainian ambassador to Australia
What Action Did The Ukrainian Ambassador Demand On Sighting A Russian Flag In The Australian Open?
Russian and Belarus tennis players competed under a neutral flag but fans were allowed to bring them with the condition that the flags won’t be used for disruption. But on Monday, Ukraine’s ambassador to Australia and New Zealand, Vasyl Myroshnychenko called on Tennis Australia and demanded strict action against Russia and Belarus after seeing the red, white, and blue stripes of Russia at an ongoing match between Ukraine’s Kateryna Baindl and Russia’s Kamilla Rakhimova on day one.
He demanded Tennis Australia enforce its ‘neutral flat policy’ with immediate effect. Last week he urged Tennis Australia to ban Russia and Belarus entirely. Belarus is – the latter for supporting the Russian invasion of Ukraine. While Tennis Australia didn’t bar Russia and Belarus from the tournament, it barred their flags onsite.
Why Tennis Australia Didn’t Bar Russia And Belarus From The Tournament?
Last year Wimbledon barred Russian and Belarusian players but it stripped the tournament of its ranking points by tennis’s governing bodies.