Russian tennis star Anastasia Potapova says she “does not care” about the criticism Iga Swiatek recently directed at her. For her Indian Wells third-round match, Potapova decided to go out on the court wearing a Russian football club Spartak Moscow shirt.
While some thought of it as Potapova sending a provocative political message, the Russian tennis player defended herself by claiming she was just a big fan of Spartak. Swiatek criticized Potapova’s action, saying it was unacceptable either way.
“Every person has the right to choose: so to go to the match in a Spartak T-shirt was my personal choice. She condemned me, but I don’t care about her complaints. If she wants to blame me for something, then I wish her good luck.
I don’t pay any attention to it,” Potapova said, via Sportskeeda.
What did Swiatek exactly say about Potapova’s action?
“I was surprised as I thought she realised that she should not, even if she is a fan of the team, show her views at such times.
I talked to the WTA and I found out that these situations will probably be less, as they will explain to players that it is not allowed to promote any Russian teams now, which reassured me a little bit. On the other hand, I think the message should have been sent much earlier,” Swiatek said in indian Wells.
Swiatek’s comments prompted a reaction from the WTA. Shortly after Swiatek’s criticism, it was reported that the WTA issued a formal warning to Potapova. In their message to Potapova, the WTA underlined to the Russian tennis player that her actions were “neither acceptable or appropriate.” Last year, Wimbledon defended their ban by stating that they did not want to risk having a situation like that at The Championships.
This year, Russian players will be allowed to return to Wimbledon but they will have to abide by a certain set of rules and conditions.