With the struggle in her residence nation ongoing, Svitolina has refused to shake arms with Russian and Belarusian gamers since returning to tennis following the delivery of her first baby final yr.
However Sabalenka, who superior to the semifinals at Roland Garros on Tuesday with a 6-4, 6-4 win, waited on the web to acknowledge Svitolina.
“I do not know, to be truthful, what I used to be ready for, as a result of my statements have been clear sufficient in regards to the handshake,” the previous world No. 3 instructed reporters.
She added: “My preliminary response, I do not know, was like, what are you doing? As a result of, yeah, my complete press convention I say my place clearly. So I do not know.”
Sabalenka confronted the same situation towards her Ukraine Marta Kostyuk within the first spherical of the French Open, when his rival additionally left the court docket with out shaking arms.
After her third- and fourth-round matches, Sabalenka stopped collaborating within the normal post-match press conferences, saying she did not really feel assured when she attended one final Wednesday.
Nevertheless, he attended a daily press convention after the quarter-finals and stated he waited on the web out of “intestine intuition”.
The world quantity 2 additionally reiterated her stance towards the struggle in Ukraine and stated she all the time revered the format of the press convention.
“I’m all the time open in my solutions,” Sabalenka instructed reporters. “I actually felt unhealthy for not coming right here. I could not sleep. As a result of all these unhealthy emotions have been in my head, I could not sleep.
“I felt very unhealthy for not coming right here. I respect all of you very a lot. Thanks very a lot for coming right here, for being concerned about me.”
Requested if Sabalenka had infected the handshake state of affairs by ready on the web, Svitolina stated: “Sure, I feel so, sadly.”
Regardless of her time away from tennis, 28-year-old Svitolina loved a robust run on the French Open after profitable her seventeenth WTA title in Strasbourg forward of the match.
She managed to go toe-to-toe with Sabalenka on court docket Philippe-Chatrier for a lot of the primary set and was damaged initially of the second as she seemed for a comeback.
However Sabalenka’s highly effective sport from the baseline ultimately overwhelmed Svitolina as she earned two breaks of serve to win in straight units.
The Australian Open champion completed the match with 30 winners towards Svitolina’s seven and subsequent Thursday she’s going to face the Czech Karolina Muchova for a spot within the French Open ultimate.