Ukraine’s Dayana Yastremska makes financial pledge after Lyon Open final

Ukraine Dayana Yastremska

Dayana Yastremska said she would be donating her prize money to help support her homeland Ukraine after she was beaten in the final of the Lyon Open by Shuai Zhang.

Yastremska, 21, and her 15-year-old sister Ivanna spent two nights sheltering in an underground car park amid the war in Ukraine before being sent to safety in France by their parents.

Following Sunday’s 3-6 6-3 6-4 loss to Zhang, Yastremska, draped in a Ukrainian flag, said on court: “The prize money I earned here I’m going to give to the Ukrainian foundation to support her nation as Russia’s relentless invasion of her homeland continues.

“And if Ukrainian people are watching me, I want to say you guys are so strong, you have an amazing spirit.

“I try to fight for Ukraine. I want to say thanks to every single person from Ukraine for standing by the Ukraine and showing people that we have a really strong spirit.”

China’s Zhang said: “Big congrats to Dayana and your team, working so hard. I know it is a big tough time for you but you are a fighter.

“This has been an incredible week and a very high-quality match in the final.

“I saw [Yastremska] grow up over the last three or four years, she’s already won many tournaments. She plays so well, very powerful, so I was really focused on myself today. I’m really proud of winning.”