‘Tennis legends’ Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert (both of the United States) expressed their opposition to Saudi Arabia hosting the final match of the Women’s Professional Tennis (WTA) Tour season. and Evert argued in an article in the American newspaper Washington Post on the 25th (Korean time) that “the plan to hold the final match of the WTA tour season in Saudi Arabia is incompatible with the spirit of women’s tennis and the WTA tour .”The WTA Tour is scheduled to hold the season finale, the WTA Finals, in early November this year. This competition is a king-of-the-king competition in which only the top ranked players from one season gather together and will be held in Mexico in 2023.
The location for this year’s competition has not yet been decided, but many predict that it will be held in Saudi Arabia .Navratilova and Ebert pointed out, “Saudi Arabia has women’s human rights issues and can punish sexual minorities with the death penalty,” and added, “In particular, it is a country where problems with human rights and basic freedoms have been of international concern for a long time. “Navratilova and Evert are ‘tennis legends’ who each won 18 women’s singles titles in major tournaments .They said, “Holding the WTA Finals in Saudi Arabia means regression, not progress,” and demanded from the WTA tour, “There must be an open and transparent discussion process before deciding on the host location, and a human rights expert must make a presentation to the players.” did.
In response to some claims that holding sports competitions in Saudi Arabia could be a starting point for positive change, Navratilova and Ebert said, “Holding competitions in a place like this would represent a major step back not only for women’s sports, but also for women.” He countered that change is a priority, saying, “I hope this situation will change within the next five years, and if such a change occurs, we will support holding the Games in that country. ”The Men’s Professional Tennis (ATP) Tour already held the Next Generation Finals in Saudi Arabia at the end of last year, featuring top ranked players under the age of 21, and Novak Djokovic (Serbia) and Arina Sabalenka (Belarus) played in Saudi Arabia in December last year. Participated in an event competition held in Riyadh, Arabia. Additionally, Rafael Nadal (Spain) also agreed to serve as a public relations 슬롯게이밍 ambassador with the Saudi Arabian Tennis Association earlier this month.