Wimbledon thrown into chaos as ATP strips Slam of ranking points over Russian and Belarusian player ban

Shahida Jacobs
Daniil Medvedev plays a shot
Daniil Medvedev at Wimbledon

The fallout from the All England Club’s (AELTC) decision to ban Russian and Belarusian players from competing at Wimbledon has taken a dramatic twist after the grass-court Grand Slam was stripped of ranking points by the ATP.

The move from the men’s professional body comes just a few days after they opted against stripping ATP events in the United Kingdom of ranking points despite Russian and Belarusian players not being allowed to compete at any events.

AELTC and the Lawn Tennis Association’s decision came on the back of Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine in February, which was in contrast to the ATP, WTA and ITF position as they allowed players from the two countries to compete as individuals with flags and anthems banned.

Both the ATP and WTA promised to take action as it meant top players like world No 2 Daniil Medvedev, Andrey Rublev, Karen Khachanov, Aslan Karatsev, Victoria Azarenka and Aryna Sabelanka are not allowed to play in the UK.

And the ATP has followed through on their threats and players won’t earn points for competing at Wimbledon.

“The decision by Wimbledon to ban Russian and Belarusian players from competing in the UK this summer undermines this principle and the integrity of the ATP Ranking system,” a statement from the ATP read.

“It is also inconsistent with our Rankings agreement. Absent a change in circumstances, it is with great regret and reluctance that we see no option but to remove ATP Ranking points from Wimbledon for 2022.

“Our rules and agreements exist in order to protect the rights of players as a whole. Unilateral decisions of this nature, if unaddressed, set a damaging precedent for the rest of the Tour. Discrimination by individual tournaments is simply not viable on a Tour that operates in more than 30 countries.”

It also confirmed that the ranking points for the Queen’s Club Championships (500), Eastbourne (25) and ATP Challenger Tour events will remain.