Chinese Tennis Association strongly condemns WTA’s decision to suspend tournaments in China
Published: Dec 02, 2021 09:50 PM
WTA Photo: IC

Photo: IC


The Chinese Tennis Association (CTA) expressed its indignation and firm opposition on Thursday to the unilateral decision made by the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) on Wednesday to suspend tournaments in China, citing so-called concerns about the well-being of Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai, according to a statement obtained by the Global Times exclusively.

The unilateral decision by the WTA in the name of "protecting its players" was made based on fictitious information, the CTA said, noting that it not only beset and hurt the relevant athlete herself, but will also severely harm the female tennis players' fair opportunities to compete. It will damage the interest of the entire sport of tennis, the CTA said.

The WTA on Wednesday announced the immediate suspension of all tournaments in China "due to concerns about the well-being of former doubles world number one Peng Shuai and the safety of other players," according to a Reuters report. 

In 2020, the WTA events in China were canceled, as China's General Administration of Sport said in July that China would not host any international sporting events in 2020 due to COVID-19 epidemic. All seven WTA tournaments that were scheduled in China on WTA's provisional calendar will not be held.

Launched in 2004, China Open is held in Beijing once a year in October. It owns the rights to host the tournaments of the three international tennis organizations (ATP, WTA and ITF). Only next to the four Grand Slam, China Open has become the most comprehensive international tennis event with the highest level and the most players in Asia.

The CTA said in the statement that it will, together with the stakeholders of the WTA tournaments in China, firmly protect their legitimate rights and interests according to the relevant agreements and laws. All the legal consequences should be borne by the WTA.

Wang Wenbin, spokesperson of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, told a routine press conference on Thursday that China has always been firmly opposed to any act of politicizing the sports. The spokesperson said this commenting on the WTA's decision to suspend tournaments in China.