FIR Statement: CHA Moscow Open 2022 & Ukraine

Due to the current actions by Russia resulting in the tragic events that are now unfolding in Ukraine, the FIR will remove the Moscow Open challenger tournament from this year’s World Tour.

Racketlon has always prided itself on having the ability to bring many different people together from many different countries to compete in an open and welcoming environment. For all of us in the worldwide Racketlon community this friendly, welcoming and diverse environment is one of the main reasons why we all enjoy playing Racketlon so much: being able to meet, make friends and build life-long relationships with so many amazing people from so many different backgrounds and cultures. People have told me so often that this is what truly sets Racketlon and our fantastic community apart and what makes it so special for them.

This is why what is currently happening in Ukraine so fundamentally goes against everything that Racketlon and our community stands for.

Our thoughts go to all those suffering at the moment and we can only hope that some sort of sense can prevail that can gradually de-escalate the situation.

Finally, I do also think it is important to acknowledge the work and effort of Svetlana (tournament director) and Maxim from the Racketlon Federation of Russia, who have been working tirelessly for a few years to try and bring the World Tour to Moscow. They were so excited (as were we at the FIR) to finally be able to do this in 2022 and welcome the Racketlon community to Moscow. Through no fault of their own, this has now been taken away. I spoke with Svetlana today who had these words:

“We are also completely shocked. We are totally against the war but there is simply nothing we can do. We had hoped until the last that our sport could remain outside of politics.  It is such a sad situation”.

I know that through the values of our inclusive, welcoming community, Racketlon will continue to grow as we share more and more experiences in more and more new countries over the coming years. It is vital that we never lose sight of these values as they are what make our sport and our community so special. And it is with this spirit that the thoughts of the whole Racketlon community are with the people of Ukraine right now.

Duncan Stahl / FIR President

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