Kostyuk’s refusal to shake Sabalenka’s hand at French Open

Kostyuk’s refusal to shake Sabalenka’s hand at French Open draws jeers.


Kostyuk’s refusal to shake Sabalenka’s hand at the French Open drew boos from the crowd.Aryna Sabalenka won a politically heated match against Marta Kostyuk at the French Open on Sunday, while the Ukrainian player was booed for refusing to shake hands with her Belarusian opponent.Sabalenka, ranked second in the world and the winner of the Australian Open, cruised to a 6-3, 6-2 victory in the opening match of her bid to become the first Russian woman to go to the second week of the French Open.

2.invasion of Ukraine

In protest of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Kostyuk kept her word and did not shake Sabalenka’s hand. Russia’s military relies heavily on Belarus’s support.“It was a physically and mentally taxing match. “I didn’t know if the booing was against me, but thank you so much for your support, it’s really important,” Sabalenka remarked to the small Court Philippe Chatrier audience after a dramatic bow.Sabalenka’s countrywoman and former world number one Victoria Azarenka is also from Belarus, but Kostyuk, at age 20, notably refused to shake hands with her at the US Open in 2017.


Instead, she opted for a light brush of the racquets against the net.Since the invasion of her country, the 39th-ranked Kostyuk has been an outspoken critic of the decision to allow Russian and Belarusian players to continue competing on tour.Let her loathe me if she must. Sabalenka, who is 25 years old, remarked, “I can’t do anything about that” the day before the match.Regarding the no shaking policy, I can see why they would feel that way. Like, if they shake hands with Russians and Belarusians, I can only imagine the backlash they’ll face at home.If they are comfortable and not shaky, that is fine with me.

4. French Open

This year marks the beginning of a new era at the French Open, as Rafael Nadal will not compete on the storied red clay for the first time since 2004.Nadal, a 14-time winner who has lost only three of his 115 matches in this tournament, will miss the 2023 edition due to injury.Two-time champion Novak Djokovic, who has defeated Nadal twice in Paris, will try to win a record-breaking 23rd Grand Slam tournament in the Spaniard’s absence.Djokovic is the current number one player in the world, but he faces strong competition from Carlos Alcaraz and Daniil Medvedev.

5.Stefanos Tsitsipas

Later on Sunday, fifth-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas, who lost to Djokovic in the 2021 final despite having a two-set advantage, will play Jiri Vesely of the Czech Republic in an attempt to win his first Grand Slam title.Tsitsipas has had a successful clay court season, reaching the semi-finals in Rome last week and coming in second place to Alcaraz in Barcelona.Vesely, a former top-40 player, is currently ranked No. 452 and has not competed on the main ATP Tour this year.

6. Czech

It would be a mistake to write off the 29-year-old Czech, who has already beaten Djokovic twice (in 2016 at the Monte Carlo Masters and in 2017 at the Dubai Championships).He and Marat Safin are the only two players in history to go undefeated against Djokovic.Andrey Rublev, the No. 7 seed and the winner in Monte Carlo in April, will face Laslo Djere of Serbia in the opening round.Both Rublev and Djere, who is ranked 57th, have reached the quarterfinals in Paris twice.Third-seeded Jessica Pegula and eighth-seeded Maria Sakkari will also be competing for the women’s title on Sunday.In this scene, 2022 quarterfinalist and American Danielle Collins is taken on by Pegula.In 2021, Sakkari reached the semifinals, but she lost to eventual champion.

Kostyuk’s refusal to shake Sabalenka’s hand at French Open
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