China opposes WTA’s backing of Peng’s sexual assault claims

China opposed the WTA’s backing of Peng Shuai’s sexual assault claims, shockingly taking exception to the allegations.

Peng made a sexual assault accusation against the former Vice-Premier of China, Zhang Gaoli. The former doubles World No. 1 did not make a public appearance for three weeks after she posted her allegation on social media.

The Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) strongly condemned what happened to Peng, and showcased their solidarity. However, China opposed the WTA’s backing of Peng’s sexual assault claims, and said that it was a conscious attempt to degrade the country’s name.

Foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin addressed the issue in a statement. He did not take the WTA’s name, but clearly suggested that China “opposes the politicisation of sports”.

“Some forces in the West are instigating a boycott against the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics,” it read as quoted by Yahoo Sports Australia. It was referring to the February attempt by human rights groups to boycott the event due to the country’s dodgy human rights record.

It can be seen that Peng’s accusation cannot be viewed on their internet. What is worse is the fact that neither Zhang nor the government has spoken on the issue at hand.

Peng (pictured) has everyone in her corner but her country. Source: Getty Images

Major issue

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) revealed that it had conducted a video call with the player. The committee offered her full support and solidarity in her time of need.

The IOC statement mentioned her as “safe and well, given the difficult situation she is in.”

Upon posting about what happened to her, Peng received support from many places. The most impressive gesture was from the WTA, who are considering boycotting events in China altogether because of this.

With the WTA expanding into China, such a decision would make the company loss millions of dollars. It is great to see them put morals ahead of money.

Read more: Was Ronnie O’Sullivan wrongly overlooked for last year’s SPOTY?

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