Australian Open draw updated with qualifiers, Peter Polansky benefits from Thanasi Kokkinakis withdrawal - UBITENNIS
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Australian Open draw updated with qualifiers, Peter Polansky benefits from Thanasi Kokkinakis withdrawal



Polansky suffered a three-set defeat to Andre Rublev in the qualifying round, but is the first “lucky loser” of the tournament, benefiting from Thanasi Kokkinakis’ misfortune. (

The full draw for Australian Open is finally out, with the places marked “qualifiers” finally filled.

At the time the draw was made the final round of qualifying had not been completed, therefore places were marked qualifiers until such player’s identities could be determined.

(Q) Andrey Rublev vs Yen-Hsun Lu

Malek Jaziri vs (Q) Go Soeda

(Q) Alexander Bublik vs (16) Lucas Pouille

Thomas Berdych vs (Q) Luca Vanni

(Q) Bjorn Fratangelo vs (Q) Noah Rubin

(Q) Jurgen Melzer vs (17) Roger Federer

(26) Albert Ramos Vinolas vs (Q) Lukas Lacko

(Q) Thomas Fabbiano vs Donald Young

(Q Frances Tiafoe vs Mikhail Kukushkin

Yoshihito Nishioka vs (Q) Alex Bolt

Daniil Medvedev vs (Q) Ernesto Escobedo

Dmitry Tursunov vs (Q) Radek Stepanek

(Q) Reilly Opelka vs (11) David Goffin

(Q Blake Mott vs (18) Richard Gasquet

(30) Pablo Carreno Busta vs (LL) Peter Polansky

Denis Istomin vs (Q) Ivan Dodig

  • Polansky has made the main draw despite losing to Andrey Rublev in the qualifying round. Kokkinakis was forced to withdraw following an abdominal injury.

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Russian Tennis Players Allowed To Play Olympics Despite Breaking IOC Rules, Says NGO



Mirra Andreeva – Australian Open 2024 (foto: X @WTA)

new report has alleged that four Russian players have been given the green light to play in the Olympic Games despite breaking or being suspected of breaking neutrality rules. 

The human rights law organization Global Rights Compliance says the quartet are among a large group of athletes from the country who have broken the rules by either supporting Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine or by working for the Russian military or intelligence services. Due to the ongoing war in Ukraine, Russian and Belarussian athletes are only allowed to participate in the Olympics under a neutral status. They are also exempt from being part of the opening ceremony.  

As part of the guidelines set out by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), these neutral athletes can only compete if they don’t show flags, emblems or the anthems of their country. They also must not have publicly supported the invasion of Ukraine or be contracted to the military.

Four-time Grand Slam doubles champion and former world No.13 in singles Elena Vesnina has been named as one of these athletes to have violated the rules, according to the Global Rights Compliance. She has been accused of using her Twitter account (now X) to retweet a post about Vladimir Putin outlining his plans to annex Crimea. On March 7th she is said to have linked an Instagram post about the killing of three Russian soilders in ukraine with the text saying “The Ministry of Defence spoke about the heroism of three more Russian soldiers”. Later that month, it is claimed she liked a post about gymnast Ivan Kuliak who displayed a pro-war “Z” symbol at a medal ceremony during the Gymnastics World Cup in Doha. 

French Open semi-finalist Mirra Adreeva is said to have liked an edited video of speeches by Putin and Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskyy. In the video, Putin says “the only thing that bothers us in this case is how to not catch cold at [Zelenskyy’s] funeral”. The text says “Legendary phrase” with laughing emojis, a Russian flag, and a heart.

Diana Shnaider, who has won two WTA titles this season, is accused of breaking rules by liking two Instagram posts during the same month the war began in February 2022. The first post was a video of media executive Margarita Simonyan justifying the invasion of ukraine. The other video is of Aleksandr Mikhailov reciting a poem which disparages those who are ashamed of being called Russian and openly claims that Ukrainians are Russians. 

Finally, men’s world No.60 Pavel Kotov is suspected of breaking the rules by being a former member of the Central Sports Club which has links to the Russian Ministry of Defence. Regarding Kotov, the report states ‘whilst it is unclear whether ties have been fully severed, affiliation with the CSKA would mean Kotov is directly subordinated to the Russian military and violates the IOC’s Principles on prohibited conduct.’ 

All four tennis players named in the report have not been given an opportunity to respond so far. Reuters news agency quotes the IOC as saying they can’t comment on individual cases highlighted in the report or on the decisions of the review panel to allow these athletes to participate in the Olympics.

It has been claimed that  33 of 59 neutral athletes entered into this year’s Olympic Games have broken IOC rules. 

Global Rights Compliance is a is a not-for-profit organisation specialising in international humanitarian, criminal and human rights law. In recent years they have been working closely with Ukraine with one of their tasks being helping the government ‘adopt legislation, regulations, and best practice facilitating the prosecution of atrocity crimes committed during the Russian-Ukrainian War.’ 

The Olympic Games opening ceremony will take place next Friday with the tennis tournament starting on July 27th. 

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Rafael Nadal Boosts Olympic Preparations With Norrie Victory, Advances To Maiden 2024 Quarter-Final

Rafael Nadal reached his first ATP quarter-final in Bastad.



(@rnadalacademy - Twitter)

Rafael Nadal boosted his preparations for the Olympics with a 6-4 6-4 victory over Cameron Norrie in Bastad.

The win means that Nadal is into his first ATP quarter-final of the season with an impressive straight sets win.

It didn’t all go Nadal’s way as the Spaniard was tested in the opening set with Norrie producing some consistent and attacking play.

The British number two managed to create some tough moments for Nadal but ultimately Norrie lacked that killer instinct to make it count.

That was the difference between him and Nadal as the Spaniard used the forehand to move Norrie out of position, therefore finishing the points off with ease.

A break in the seventh game put Nadal in control but the former champion in Bastad had to work hard to close out the opening set with Norrie pushing for the break.

However, Nadal did secure the opening set 6-4 with some incredible hitting.

As expected though Nadal’s level dropped in the second set as he still hasn’t managed to find his consistent level.

A sensational passing shot at the net saw Norrie break before consolidating to take a 4-1 lead.

It was an incredible turnaround for the Brit but a lack of composure and concentration allowed Nadal a chance to get back in the match.

Get back in the match Nadal did as he managed to sustain a high level of play throughout the next period of the match, securing five games in a row to claim the win.

After the match Nadal spoke about how crucial it was for him to improve his rhythm, “I think I played in some moments good tennis, in some moments I need to play a little bit more aggressive, but that is part of the journey today,” Nadal told the ATP website.

“Great feelings. I’ve been a while without playing on the Tour, since Roland Garros.  To have the chance to compete well against a great player like Cameron is a great feeling.

“I haven’t been competing very often, so matches and victories like today help. To be in rhythm the whole match and hold the pressure on the opponent the whole match, that’s something that I need to improve, because I didn’t play enough.”

Nadal will now aim for a tenth win of the season when he plays fourth seed Mariano Navone on Friday.

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2024 BNP Paribas Open Added Nearly $1bn To Local Economy, Says Study



The total gross economic impact of this year’s BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells was more than 50% greater than that of 2022, according to a study published by George Washington University. 

There was a total gross economic impact of over $852 million on the Coachella Valley regional economy, which is significantly higher than the $565 million that was generated in 2022. 2022 was the last time the study was conducted.

The economic impact figures are calculated by the direct ($568,988,608) and indirect and induced ($247,822,499) economic impacts and then adding them together. Direct spending includes money spent by out-of-town visitors and indirect includes re-spending of this money by the regional businesses in the regional economy.

According to a press release provided by the tennis tournament, this year’s BNP Paribas Open generated an attendance of 493,440 visitors over a two-week period which is a new record. On average each visitor to the event spent 3.18 days there. It is also estimated that there were 44,000 more out-of-town visitors to Indian Wells than two years ago. 

“The BNP Paribas Open continues to deliver a positive impact on the Coachella Valley economy,” said Philippe Dore, Chief Marketing Officer of the BNP Paribas Open. “With nearly $1 billion in total impact this year and a 51 percent increase compared to 2022, we remain poised for sustained success and growth in the community for years to come.”

To put the figures into perspective, a study conducted in 2023 by Researchers at the sports industry research centre at Sheffield Hallam University estimated that Wimbledon provides an estimated £200M ($259,675,000*) boost to the London economy. Meanwhile, in June 2024 Nielsen Sports reported that the Australian Open has generated AUS$3.14bn ($2,115bn*) in economic benefits to the Australian state of Victoria, where the event is hosted, over the past decade. 

George Washington University has calculated the findings by estimating the direct and indirect input based on ‘industry standard methodology, visitor survey results, and the data provided by Indian Wells organizers and sponsors.”

Indian Wells is a combined event that is categorised as a Masters 1000 for men and as a WTA 1000 for women. This year Carlos Alcaraz and Iga Swiatek captured the titles with each of them earning $1,100,000 in prize money.

*Figures are rough estimates based on the current exchange rate. 

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