Medvedev to defend title as US Open allows players from Russia, Belarus to compete

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The US Open has announced players from Russia and Belarus will be allowed to compete in this year’s tournament despite the ongoing war in Ukraine.

The decision means world number one Daniil Medvedev can defend his title.

While the United States Tennis Association is allowing Russian and Belarusians to enter the tournament, the athletes must play under a neutral flag. The French Open, which concluded on June 5, allowed Russian and Belarusians to compete under the same conditions.

"Alongside the other grand slams, the ITF, the ATP and the WTA, the USTA, which owns and operates the US Open, has previously condemned, and continues to condemn, the unprovoked and unjust invasion of Ukraine by Russia," the USTA said in a statement.

"The USTA, standing with these other tennis entities, supported the banning of the Russian and Belarusian Tennis Federations from the ITF, and therefore all international team competitions, and the directive for players from those countries to play under a neutral flag when competing outside of international team competitions."

Since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine in February, several organisations have banned Russian athletes from participating. Wimbledon, which starts on June 27, announced back in April that Russian and Belarusians would be barred from competing.

"We recognise that each organisation has had to deal with unique circumstances that affect their decisions," the USTA's statement read. "Based on our own circumstances, the USTA will allow all eligible players, regardless of nationality, to compete at the 2022 US Open."

The US Open begins on August 29 in New York.

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