Iga Swiatek will not play for Poland in the prestigious Billie Jean King Cup because she criticized world tennis authorities
Women’s world number one Iga Swiatek has announced she will not represent Poland at the Billie Jean King Cup final in Glasgow next month, attacking tennis’ governing bodies for their handling of the sport’s calendar.
Three-time Grand Slam winner Swiatek helped Poland reach the tournament final but will not feature in their conclusion due to the event’s close proximity to the WTA Finals in the calendar.
The Bille Jean King Cup final, organized by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and formerly titled Fed Cup, is due to be held in Scotland from November 8-13.
They will arrive one day after the season-ending WTA Finals, which are organized by the Women’s Tour and will be played this year in Fort Worth, Texas.
Swiatek announced his withdrawal from the international tag team tournament on Instagram.
“I’ve thought about it a lot and discussed it again with my team, but I won’t be able to play the Billie Jean King Cup in Glasgow. And that makes me sad,” she wrote.
Iga Swiatek wants to talk to the WTA and ITF about the demands placed on players after his withdrawal from the BJK King Cup. She says traveling and changing time zones from the WTA Finals in Texas to the BJK Cup in Glasgow is “not safe for our health and could cause injury”. pic.twitter.com/4glwYvNW5c
— Jonathan Jurejko (@J_Jurejko) October 3, 2022
“I’m really sorry, because I play for Poland whenever possible and I always do my best. Playing in Poland this year was an honor and I was hoping to do it again at the end of the season.
“I’m disappointed that the tennis governing bodies couldn’t come to an agreement on something as basic as the tournament schedule, giving us just one day to travel around the world and change the time zone,” Swiatek added.
The 21-year-old claimed the situation was “not safe for our health and could cause injury,” what prompted her to speak at the WTA and ITF “to change something”.
“This situation is difficult not only for players like me, but especially for tennis fans who support our sport,” Swiatek said.
The Billie Jean King Cup final will see 12 countries compete in four round robin groups containing three teams each.
The group winners will advance to the semi-finals, with Poland being drawn in Group D to face the Czech Republic and the United States.
Russia are defending champions but have been banned from this year’s tournament due to the conflict in Ukraine.
Swiatek will not take part in the competition but will next be seen on court at the Ostrava Open on Wednesday, where she will face Ajla Tomljanovic in the round of 16.
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