Russian tennis players Khachanov, Samsonova decline Paris Olympics invites. Medvedev status unclear

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — Russian tennis players Karen Khachanov and Liudmila Samsonova declined to play at the Paris Olympics, the IOC said on Friday, and their next highest ranked compatriots were invited instead.

The IOC said Pavel Kotov, the 50th-ranked men’s player, and Anna Kalinskaya, ranked No. 17, were invited to join the eight-person Russian team for tennis in Paris. The players are competing as neutrals during the military invasion of Ukraine.

The tournament is at Roland Garros from July 27-Aug. 4.

The top two Russian men’s players, No. 5 Daniil Medvedev and No. 6 Andrey Rublev, had neither confirmed nor declined their invitations on the International Olympic Committee’s updated list on Friday. Rublev is reportedly not going to Paris for health reasons.

Olympic invitations were accepted by Roman Safiullin and Ekaterina Alexandrova, the IOC said.

Governing bodies of Olympic sports and the IOC are vetting individual athletes from Russia and its military ally Belarus to compete with neutral status in Paris.

Athletes are being blocked if they expressed support for the Russian invasion or had ties to sports clubs linked to the military or state security services.

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AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/2024-paris-olympic-games

Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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