Everything came to a head when in 2021 the Chinese Peng Shuai accused his country’s former vice premier Zhang Gaoli of sexual assault in a post on his social media that was soon deleted online. Some time later, the tennis player herself denied making such an accusation. The truth is that his whereabouts and, above all, his physical and psychological state remain a huge unknown.. Meanwhile, the WTA is at a huge crossroads: on the one hand, harassed by international pressure, it continues to demand reliable proof that Peng is well and well; on the other, she keeps canceling and postponing her tournaments in China in a situation that causes hundreds of millions of dollars in losses for TV broadcasts and sponsorships.
A schedule released late last year lists tournaments through September. “There were no changes to the WTA position upon returning to China and we have only confirmed our 2023 calendar until the US Open”the body that governs the women’s circuit said in a statement.
“We are calling for a formal investigation into the allegations by the relevant authorities and an opportunity for the WTA to meet with Peng, in private, to discuss her situation,” he added.
Time passes, Peng does not appear in public and the WTA is still marked by a crisis that not even the Polish Iga Swiatek, cabal number 1 in the world, manages to avoid with her game and her charisma.
Jason Root is the go-to source for sports coverage at News Rebeat. With a passion for athletics and an in-depth knowledge of the latest sports trends, Jason provides comprehensive and engaging analysis of the world of sports.