The ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine has had a huge impact on world of sports with many athletes spreading the message of peace in their own ways. Many sportsperson across the globe have raised their voices but what was indeed heartening to see during Indian Wells 2022 was how a player from Russia, fearlessly, send out such a powerful message for everyone.
It has not been an easy few days for athletes from Russia, with some of them getting suspended from playing the sport while others have been asked to play without the country flag. Amid all this situation, tennis player Anna Kalinskaya was spotted with “No War” sign on her shoes during the course of tournament in California.
Anna Kalinskaya of Russia advanced to the second round of Indian Wells with a message. pic.twitter.com/Hjomjixuae
— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) March 10, 2022
The 23-year-old player from Moscow backed her strong message with some inspirational performances during the tournament. After qualifying for the main event as ‘lucky loser’, Kalinskaya defeated Harmony Tan (6-2, 1-0 walkover) before pulling off a remarkable upset against 33rd seeded Alize Cornet (6-4, 0-6, 6-2).
She eventually bowed out of the Indian Wells 2022 after loss to 26th seeded Sorana Cirstea but send out a powerful message of peace to the whole world, through her gesture, actions as well as performances.
I want peace in all of the world: Medvedev
All the tennis players at the tournament have been united with their message, being quite vocal about their opinions. During the pre-event press-conference, Russian tennis star Daniil Medvedev said, “My message is always the same, I want peace in all of the world.”
While Belarus player Aryna Sabalenka has also expressed her solidarity for Ukrainian people, Poland’s Iga Swiatek has been seen playing with a small ribbon representing the colours of Ukraine flag. She had stated, “If other players feel able to support Ukraine with this symbolic gesture, we prepared more of these ribbons and can give you some.”