Australian Open bans Russian flag after Ukraine complaint

Australian Open organisers have banned Russian and Belarusian flags from the Melbourne Park precinct during the tournament after a complaint from Ukraine’s ambassador to the country.

On Monday, the red, white and blue stripes of Russia were held up by fans during a first-round clash between Ukraine’s Kateryna Baindl and Russia’s Kamilla Rakhimova on day one.

Ukrainian fans reportedly called security and police to the stands.

A Russian flag was also unfurled at Rod Laver Arena during Daniil Medvedev’s clash with American Marcos Giron.

“I strongly condemn the public display of the Russian flag during the game of the Ukrainian tennis player Kateryna Baindl at the Australian Open today,” Ukraine’s ambassador to Australia and New Zealand Vasyl Myroshnychenko wrote on Twitter.

“I call on Tennis Australia to immediately enforce its ‘neutral flag’ policy.”

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