Victoria Azarenka booed by Wimbledon fans after match with Elina Svitolina

Relations between athletes from these countries have been very tense since the time of the armed attack of Russian troops on Ukraine, with the support of Belarus. This is best seen in tennis, where all states of conflict intersect on the court.

This is exactly what happened on Sunday in London. After a brilliant duel, even a duel, Switolina finally won, who needed a fatal tiebreaker to win. But with the winning ball, there was no traditional handshake and mutual thanks. Elena, like every tennis player from Ukraine, stipulated that she would not follow the tennis habit in the case of players from Russia and Belarus.

So, as expected, there was no handshake. Azarenka waited a while on target for Svitolina after her win. The players bowed and that was it.


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However, the Belarusian player was loudly booed off the field as Svitolina prepared to meet her after the match. At first, those interested did not believe in the audience’s reaction, but after a while she answered with a mocking smile and a nod – she raised her wrist towards the stands.

The audience did not spare Azarenka

Photo: Imago

What could Azarenka’s gesture mean?

There is no shortage of interpretations of the Belarusian woman’s gesture.

Portal claims that Azarenka hit her fist, which clearly had a negative connotation. In this way, the Belarusian imitates the gesture made by the heroes of the famous comedy series “Friends”. “In some circumstances, it is seen as a form of telling someone to stay away from you,” wrote.

On the other hand, the Spanish tennis website predicted that the player “raised her wrists and slashed them as if she had asked to handcuff her hands because she did not fully understand the reason for the whistles.”

A journalist asked the Belarusian woman about her behaviour. Interestingly, she was not able to answer them. – I don’t know, he has no idea. I can’t even repeat it now,” she exclaimed.

“I was supposed to stand and wait?”

After the match, the fans were criticized for their behavior towards the Belarusian player, among others by tennis experts. – I don’t know why the crowd booed Azarenka. They are wrong, former tennis champion Martina Navratilova wondered.

At the conference, the player was asked if she felt like a “victim” of the whole situation.

– A victim whom someone did not shake hands with? Please. She does not want to shake hands with Russians and Belarusians. I respect her decision. What can i do? Stand there and wait? Azarenka asked the reporters. She added that there are more important problems in the world. – The subject of this handshake is not a life-changing one. But if you want to make a great deal of it, headlines, whatever, then go ahead and do it.

The Ukrainian thanks the fans

The winner, who met a completely different attitude from the fans, was clearly enthusiastic and grateful for the support.

“When I was losing in the second set, I heard you guys cheering for me and I thought I was going to cry. You gave me so much strength today. You were really incredible – I thanked you in the post-match interview.

In the quarterfinals, Swetolina will face Polish ranking leader Iga Schwijk. Both ladies match on Tuesday.

(MB, Tg)

Victoria Azarenka just smiled as she bid farewell to her whistles at Wimbledon

Photo: Eurosport


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