ATP to probe ‘serious’ abuse claims against Alexander Zverev: ‘We have a responsibility to address them’

Alexander Zverev in action

The ATP has launched an investigation into the domestic abuse allegations against Alexander Zverev, which were made by his former girlfriend Olga Sharypova.

World No 4 Zverev has been accused of physical and emotional abuse in a series of incidents by former junior player Sharypova, but the German has denied the allegations on several occasions.

Sharypova first came forward about the alleged abuse in October last year and made fresh allegations during an interview with American online magazine Slate in August this year.

The ATP, though, has kept mum about the incidents up to now with former world No 1 Andy Murray last week urging authorities to address the issue, saying it continue to “linger”.

Andy Murray urges ATP’s powers that be to address the Alexander Zverev domestic abuse allegations

And the powers that be have now finally decided to launch an investigation about an incident at the ATP Masters 1000 event in Shanghai in 2019.

A statement read: “The ATP fully condemns any form of violence or abuse and will investigate such allegations related to conduct at an ATP member tournament.”

Chief executive Massimo Calvelli added: “The allegations raised against Alexander Zverev are serious and we have a responsibility to address them. We hope our investigation will allow us to establish the facts and determine appropriate follow-up action.

“We understand Zverev welcomes our investigation and acknowledge that he has denied all allegations. We will also be monitoring any further legal developments following the preliminary injunction obtained by Zverev in the German Courts.”

The statement came at the same time as an independent safeguarding report, commissioned by the ATP, was completed.

The report was compiled by a team led by Chris Smart, the former Detective Chief Inspector of the Metropolitan Police, outlines recommendations to ensure all adults and minors involved in professional tennis are safe and protected from abuse.

Calvelli added: “As an organisation we recognise the need to be doing more to ensure everyone involved in professional tennis feels safe and protected.

“The recommendations of the safeguarding report will help us approach this in a robust way. We are committed to making meaningful steps forward and know this won’t be an overnight process.”