Australian Open slammed for snubbing Wimbledon champ Elena Rybakina

Australian Open is slammed for SNUBBING reigning Wimbledon champ Elena Rybakina as fans say she’s copped harsh treatment because she’s ‘not good-looking or marketable enough’

  • Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina has been snubbed at Australian Open
  • Rybakina, 23, will be playing on an outside court, far from the spotlight
  • Fans say the harsh treatment is because she’s not good-looking or marketable

The Australian Open has been heavily criticised for scheduling Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina to play on an outside court, with some fans claiming she’s getting harsh treatment because of her looks and lack of marketability.

Rybakina, 23, stunned the tennis world in 2022 by beating Tunisian Ons Jabeur in the Wimbledon decider.

The Australian Open’s decision to schedule Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina to play on an outside court has gone down badly with fans

Rybakina, 23, stunned the tennis world in 2022 by beating Tunisian Ons Jabeur in the Wimbledon decider – but it seems Open organisers aren’t impressed

However, she didn’t climb up the rankings because Wimbledon wasn’t awarding points to Russian athletes due to the war in Ukraine, even though Rybakina became a naturalised Kazakh in 2018.

Rybakina, who is still ranked No.25, will play Italian Elisabetta Cocciaretto in the first round on Court 13 at Melbourne Park.

The move has prompted well-known tennis writer Ben Rothenberg to wonder why the champion player has been relegated to an outside court.

Rybakina (pictured in tears after her Wimbledon win), who is still ranked No. 25, will play Italian Elisabetta Cocciaretto in the first round on Court 13 at Melbourne Park

‘Reigning Wimbledon champ Elena Rybakina got relegated all the way out to the hinterland of Court 13 for her first #AusOpen match,’ he wrote.

‘I understand there is a saturation of recent women’s Slam champs, to an extent, but has a reigning Wimbledon champ ever been so quickly disregarded?’

The question sparked many responses, with some fans believing the scheduling has to do with her appearance.

 Well-known tennis writer Ben Rothenberg asked the question why the champion player has been relegated to an outside court

One twitter user commented: ‘So disrespectful. And you know the 70s/80s ranked player they’re going to have on a show court. This is a problem on the women’s side. The men are rewarded for their ACHIEVEMENTS. The women are reduced to their looks and marketability.’

Another replied: ‘It doesn’t help that relative to more exciting, crowd-drawing, marketable players, she’s not a big name at all. Would a stadium full of ppl pay the cash to see her vs a lesser-known player? It sucks cuz if you win a slam, you should have prominence. But…’

A third added: ‘It’s because they feel she is not marketable. I’m sure Emma will play in prime time and on a major court.’

Some fans believed the Australian Open has snubbed Rybakina because she is ‘not marketable’

Sports editor Sam Street joked: ‘You should see what the Australian Open did with the reigning Wimbledon men’s champion last year,’ referring to the dramatic deportation of Novak Djokovic. 

Rybakina hasn’t had a great start to the season, winning just one of her three matches at the Adelaide International.

Her best finish in the Australian Open came in 2020 when she made it to the third round.

Officials have also come under fire for the scheduling of US Open champion Dominic Thiem’s enticing first-round match with fifth seed Andrey Rublev.

Rybakina hasn’t had a great start to the season, winning just one of her three matches at the Adelaide International

The pair will clash at John Cain Arena at 11am on Tuesday, which many people feel is an odd time for two the highest-profile players on the men’s tour.

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