Women’s world number one tennis player Iga Swiatek will host a charity tennis event in her home country of Poland that will benefit child victims of the war in Ukraine.
Swiatek, who won the 2022 French Open in May, moved on to the second round of Wimbledon on Tuesday after beating Jana Fett of Croatia in straight sets. The opening round win was Swiatek’s 36th in a row.
“For months I have been working with my team on a charity initiative for Ukraine to support those who suffer because of the war,” Swiatek posted to social media on Wednesday. “Together with Agnieszka Radwanska, Elina Svitolina, Sergiy Stakhovsky and Martyn Pawleski, we will meet in Krakow on 23rd July during a special event. We will play a mixed doubles exhibition match. Additionally, Agnieszka and I will one set of singles.”
“Total proceeds from the event will be donated to the support of children and teenagers affected by the war in Ukraine.”
🇺🇦 Od miesięcy pracowałam z moim zespołem nad inicjatywą pomocową dla Ukrainy, aby realnie wesprzeć tych, którzy cierpią z powodu wojny.
🇺🇦 For months I have been working with my team on a charity initiative for Ukraine to support those who suffer because of the war…
MORE ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/3MeOI3d1W1
— Iga Świątek (@iga_swiatek) June 29, 2022
The announcement comes during the Wimbledon tournament in England, where players from Russia and Belarus are banned from competing.
The All England Club defended its decision to ban Russian and Belarusian players last week after taking criticism for the move.
“We hugely regret the impact on individual players, but it remains the right decision for us this year,” Chief Executive Sally Bolton said, according to the BBC.
Novak Djokovic, who is attempting to win his fourth Wimbledon in a row, reiterated his opposition to the ban on Saturday.
“What I can say, as a child of a war – several wars actually during the 90’s – I know what it feels like,” Djokovic said on Saturday. “But on the other hand, I can’t say that I fully agree to ban Russian tennis players and Belarusian tennis players from competing indefinitely.
“I just don’t see how they have contributed to anything that is really happening. I don’t feel it’s fair.”
Due to the ban on Russian and Belarusian players, the ATP and WTA both announced in May that no ranking points would be awarded at the tournament.