SportsRussian tennis star Daria Kasatkina risks career to voice opposition amid political crisis

Russian tennis star Daria Kasatkina risks career to voice opposition amid political crisis

In the picture: Daria Kasatkina
In the picture: Daria Kasatkina
Images source: © Getty Images
10:28 AM EST, February 19, 2024

Following Russia's attack on Ukraine, Russian tennis players can no longer compete under their country's flag. The same rule has also been applied to athletes from Belarus, which supports Russia under Vladimir Putin's leadership.

While Anastasia Potapova has been seen proudly displaying the Russian flag, the situation is quite different for Daria Kasatkina. Unafraid to voice her opposition, Kasatkina does not support the current Russian government.

"It was a great risk for me to condemn the war, especially since my parents are still living there. However, I just couldn't stay silent and pretend that everything is okay," she told "The Sunday Times".

Stating her opposition to the war is not the only way Kasatkina has taken a stance. Open about her sexuality, she is also gay. Currently, she is in a relationship with Natalia Zabijako, a Russian figure skater of Estonian origin who competes in pair skating.

Kasatkina is aware of the strong likelihood that she will not be able to return to Russia in the future, especially given her continued vocal opposition to the current situation in the country. She made the decision to share a heartfelt message from Yulia Navalny, Alexei's widow. Accompanying a joint picture of the couple, Yulia had posted, "I love you".

Kasatkina's actions have not gone unnoticed. Ben Rothenberg, an American journalist, labelled her as the "bravest voice in tennis." Kasatkina's recent expressions of solidarity have also moved fans.

In the photo: post shared by Daria Kasatkina.
In the photo: post shared by Daria Kasatkina.© Instagram
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