How the War in Ukraine Turned Tennis Into a Battlefield

It was a few days before the start of Wimbledon this summer, and Elina Svitolina, just off a flight from Geneva, had come to the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club to check in for the tournament. She was returning after a year’s absence. “It feels like it has been 10 years,” she said as she got out of the car. A lot had happened since she last competed at Wimbledon, in 2021. She had given birth to a daughter named Skaï, the first child for her and her husband, the French player Gaël Monfils. Also, her country, Ukraine, had been invaded by Russia.

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