Former world No. 31 Sergiy Stakhovsky admitted he didn't believe Russia would actually invade Ukraine. On February 24, Russia launched their invasion of Ukraine. Stakhovsky wasn't in Ukraine at the time Russia launched their invasion but he returned to his country to fight the Russian invasion.
Stakhovsky didn't have any military experience but he knew how to handle a gun. "I don't have the words to describe it,” Stakhovsky told Eurosport. “I would never imagine in my life that it would come to this, that I would be in my home city patrolling in a home-made vest, with a gun in my hands.
"I mean, five days before the war was in Kyiv, and a lot of people in American and British intelligence saying that Russia will invade, even then I was 100 per cent sure it's not going to happen. I said there was no chance Russia openly would go into war, invade Ukraine - on what pretext? “There is no pretext for it.
So I don't have to go far. I mean, I'm still, you know, a lot of people are saying that they're waking up and hoping. It was just a bad dream. But on day 16, (that) doesn't work anymore."
Stakhovsky: It was surreal at first but not anymore
It has been nearly three weeks since Russia launched their invasion of Ukraine.
“First couple of days, (it's) surreal. You don't believe that it's actually happening. And the next thing you know, you get used to it and you're just trying to find a way of helping your country to actually survive," Stakhovsky said.
Meanwhile, Stakhovsky's wife and three kids are safe. Stakhovsky ensured his wife and kids safely got to Hungary before returning home to fight the Russian invasion. Stakhovsky admitted his wife was against returning home and joining the war.