Andrey Rublev insisted he didn't have a problem with the Ukrainian flag being displayed during his Australian Open match but he had a problem when "bad words" started coming his way. During Rublev's Australian Open second-round match against Emil Ruusuvuori, two fans unveiled the Ukrainian flag in the stands of the Kia Arena.
Rublev, who had a discussion with the chair umpire, was asked to explain what really happened after the match. "I said straightaway to the referee, it’s not about the flag, they can put any flag they want, I understand completely the situation.
It was more that they started to tell me bad words and bad things. I said to the referee: ‘It’s not about the flag, but please can you tell them at least to not say bad words when I’m on the changeover,'" Rublev told Simon Cambers of the AP.
"It was more that they started to tell me bad words and bad things. I said to the referee: ‘It’s not about the flag, but please can you tell them at least to not say bad words when I’m on the changeover.’” 2/2 — Simon Cambers (@scambers73) January 19, 2023
Rublev was banned from competing at Wimbledon
Last year, Wimbledon imposed player bans on Russian and Belarusian players.
As a result, sixth-ranked Rublev was banned from competing at Wimbledon. Since the Russian aggression on Ukraine started, Rublev has been insisting he is for peace in the world. Also, Rublev said he tried to approach Wimbledon with solutions but they weren't really interested in listening.
Recently, Rublev said that banning Russians from this year's Wimbledon will do no good to tennis. “We had a meeting with the Grand Slams and the ATP. It’s really good that ATP is more open to help everyone. We were very honest, giving a lot of options, many ways to help.
Really help. Because, if they ban us for the second year, we will see no changes and will be worst for tennis. Only we make more fire in the tennis. And it doesn’t help the situation. We are offering help in any direction that is possible. We want to show that tennis can be bigger than politics,” Rublev said.