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Victoria Azarenka and Marta Kostyuk to play a politically-charged Belarus vs Ukraine US Open clash

With Azarenka beating Ashlyn Krueger of the United States and Kostyuk going past Egypt's Mayar Sherif in their first-round encounters, the two players will now meet in the 2nd round on September 1 (Thursday). 

Victoria Azarenka and Marta Kostyuk to play a politically-charged Belarus vs Ukraine US Open clash Source: Twitter

The upcoming 2nd round clash in US Open between Victoria Azarenka and Marta Kostyuk will be more than a tennis match. Azarenka is from Belarus and Kostyuk is from Ukraine. Belarus has been an ally of Russia in their war on Ukraine. In fact, Belarus has allowed Russian troops to enter its territory to launch an attack on Ukraine. Due to this reason, Kostyuk has spoken, on number of occasions, to not participate in tournaments and events which has players from Belarus or Russia. Not to forget, unlike Wimbledon 2022, players from Russia and Ukraine are allowed to take part in US Open. But with a condition that they cannot play under their country's flags. 

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With Azarenka beating Ashlyn Krueger of the United States and Kostyuk going past Egypt's Mayar Sherif in their first-round encounters, the two players will now meet in the 2nd round on September 1 (Thursday). The recenty history between the two players is not very sweet. The political tension between two nations means that these 2 players are also at loggerheads. 

Recently, Azarenka was asked to quit a money-raising event for Ukraine just ahead of the US Open 2022. It was because Kostyuk had pulled out telling the organisers that she cannot take part in an event which also has players from Russis and Belarus. Eventually, Azarenka was dropped from the event, which was co-inciding with Ukraine's independence day. 

“When we found out that there would be representatives of Russia or Belarus at this event, I immediately said that I will not participate in this,” the 20-year-old Krotyuk had said on her pull out from the event.