Aug 15 (Reuters) – The size of the Ukraine flag that a fan had draped around her during a match at the Cincinnati Open on Monday was the reason she was asked to remove it from the grounds, tournament officials told Reuters on Tuesday.
During a qualifying match between Russian players Anna Kalinskaya and Anastasia Potapova on Sunday, one of the players reportedly complained to the WTA chair umpire Morgane Lara about the fan, according to reports.
Video of the incident posted online showed Lara come down from her chair to speak to the fan, who ultimately left the court. She reportedly was approached on the grounds by the tournament’s head of security, who told her the flag was above regulation size.
Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, calling it a “special military operation” aimed at pre-emptively safeguarding its security against NATO expansion. Ukraine and the West accuse Moscow of waging an unprovoked imperial-style war of aggression.