Former world No. 31 Sergiy Stakhovsky revealed his wife felt he betrayed them when he decided to leave the family and return to Ukraine to fight the Russian invasion. After ensuring his wife and three kids were at a safe place, Stakhovsky decided to return home and defend his country.
Stakhovsky admitted leaving his family wasn't easy but added he would never be able to forgive himself if he decided to stay away. “My children were watching cartoons as I was leaving Hungary. I didn’t want to distract them.
My 3-year-old noticed me with my backpack…I told him I’ll be right back, otherwise he would start crying. My wife was mad. She felt it was a betrayal. We talk now, which is an improvement, and I hope she’ll forgive me…It was a no-win scenario…I couldn’t forgive myself if I stayed.
Now I can’t forgive myself now that I’m here. I had to make a difficult choice between my family and my country," Stakhovsky said, per Inside Tennis.
Stakhovsky on the sanctions Russia is facing
The ATP and WTA have decided against banning Russian players from competing in international events.
However, Russian players do not play under the name or flag of Russia. Stakhovsky admitted banning Russian players from competing all together might be a bit unfair but added he thinks it's neccessary. “Maybe it’s unfair [to ban Russian players from the tour], but there’s no other method of stopping Russia…They need to be accountable…and the only way to make it happen is to make Russians feel guilty and make them rethink who’s governing them…Maybe they should vote better if they want the benefits of normal life and to study and travel abroad.
You will have to put a collective guilt on the nation for the actions of their leader. When Hitler was destroying Europe all the Germans were collectively guilty," Stakhovsky added.