LOOK: Aryna Sabalenka’s Australian Open Trophy Is Missing Specific Detail

Aryna Sabalenka Australian Open champion 2023

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Aryna Sabalenka picked up her first Grand Slam title this weekend at the Australian Open, defeating Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan in a three-set thriller.

Sabalenka was overcome with emotion after the big win and was later presented with the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup, the Women’s Singles Champion trophy, on the court at Rod Laver Arena.

After the trophy presentation and traditional photoshoot on the court, the 24-year-old took her trophy to the set of Nine’s World Wide of Sports. During the interview, she was flabbergasted when she noticed her name had already been engraved on the base.

“‘Oh my god, I already have my name!” Sabalenka said. “Wow. This is just actually unbelievable. It’s all the stars. All those names.”

However, one key detail was missing.

Sabalenka, a Belarusian-born player, did not have her country engraved next to her name like prior winners.

The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) and the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) have barred players from Russia and Belarus from competing in tournaments unless they play under a neutral flag since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Sabalenka becomes the first player to win a Grand Slam title under a neutral flag.

“I think everyone still knows that I’m a Belarusian player. That’s it,” Sabalenka said.

Sabalenka also became the first singles player from Russia or Belarus to win a Grand Slam since Maria Sharapova at the French Open in 2014.

The next Grand Slam tournament on the schedule will be on the clay courts at Roland Garros. The French Open runs from Sunday, May 28 through Sunday, June 11. We will have to wait and see if Sabalenka can keep up her momentum.

Australian Open Schedule 2023: Men’s Final Start Time & TV Info
Australian Open Schedule 2023: Men’s Final Start Time & TV Info