Sports

Sports stars from Belarus who may be affected

Belarusian tennis player Aryna Sabalenka.  (Photo: Getty Images)

Belarusian tennis player Aryna Sabalenka. (Photo: Getty Images)

Belarus, country section of international competitions As punishment for the support given by his government to Russia in the invasion of Ukraine, he has a minor sporting weight on the world stage, which focuses on a dozen disciplines.

As is the case with Russia, in its case due to its doping irregularities, the new sports sanctions for Belarus are raining on the wet: The president of the Olympic committee, Victor Lukashenko, inherited the position by hand after almost a quarter of a century in the hands of his father Alexandr, president of the country and considered Europe’s last dictator.

That is why the IOC does not recognize its Olympic authority, has condemned the repression exerted on opposition athletes and expelled two federation officials from the Tokyo 2020 Games for harass athlete Krystina Tsimanouskayawho fled to Poland.

Belarus ranked 45th in the last Tokyo Games, with 7 medals and only one gold, and 24th in the Beijing 2022 Winter Games, in which it won two silvers.

These are some of the main Belarusian sports stars that may be affected by international sanctions:

ARYNA SABALENKA, THE THIRD TENNIS PLAYER ON THE CIRCUIT

At 23 years old, Aryna Sabalenka reached second place in the world tennis ranking in 2021 – she is now third – after winning ten titles in four seasons.

His unfinished business is win a Grand Slam tournamentafter coming close last year with his semifinals at Wimbledon and the US Open.

In the previous decade he reached number one on the circuit the also Belarusian Victoria Azarenkawinner of the Australian Open in 2012 and 2013 and who at 32 still occupies a worthy sixteenth position in the WTA ranking.

MAKSIM NEDASEKAU, TOKYO’S ONLY ATHLETICS PODIUM

Athletics is the sport that most Olympic successes has given to Belarus, but his balance in Tokyo 2020 was limited to one medal, the bronze of Maksim Nedasekau in the high jump, with a mark of 2.37.

He was fourth in the last world championships and faced this season as second in the world ranking.

IVAN LITVINOVICH, OLYMPIC GOLD

The lone Olympic gold of the Belarusian delegation in Tokyo was hung by the 20-year-old trampoline gymnast Ivan Litvinovich, who is also individual world runner-up and double team champion.

Two weeks ago he won the World Cup in Baku, ahead of his teammate Andrei Builou.

Next June in Rimini (Italy) the European Championships await them, except for a move by the International Gymnastics Federation, which has not yet announced sanctions beyond the suppression of anthems and flags.

ALINA HARNASKO, FIGURE OF THE WORLD RHYTHM

The bronze at the Tokyo Games deservedly put Alina Harnasko on the Olympic podium, who already had six world and seven European medalsincluding two runners-up in the complete contest.

Last weekend she participated in the Tartu Grand Prix and finished first, after winning ribbon, ball and hoop and being second in clubs.

The series of world cups begins on the 18th in Athens. By then the federative position should be known.

CANOEING, A POWER

If there is a sport in which Belarus is currently a world powerthat’s flatwater canoeing.

The last World Cups, played in 2021, placed the team in the second final positionwith 8 medals, four of them gold.

One of these was put around their necks by the members of the K4 500, who were the same ones who two months earlier had won Olympic silver in Tokyo: Volha Khudzenka, Maryna Litvinchuk, Marharyta Makhneva and Nadzeya Papok.

This year The World Cups will be in August at Dartmouth (Canada).

ANTON SMOLSKI, CONTINUING THE TRADITION IN BIATHLON

On winter sportsthe biathlon is the one more success has historically given to Belarus, with eleven Olympic medals.

One of them fell in Beijing 2022 thanks to Anton Smolski, silver in the 20 km. He was an award for perseverance, because he signed up for six tests.

ALEXANDR RIABUSHENKO, ASTANA RUNNER

His first season meets in Astana the runner Alexandr Riabushenko, who has just participated in the Vuelta a la Comunidad Valenciana (57).

He is expected in Paris-Nice on Sunday, unless the sanctions are effective before.

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