Two-time Grand Slam winner Victoria Azarenka has called for further clarification and personal contact in the case of Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai.
“Not much has happened in terms of contact with Peng Shuai, although we will continue to do everything we can to ensure that she is well and comfortable,” said the Belarusian after her second-round victory at the Australian Open.
Azarenka won the title in Melbourne in 2012 and 2013 and is a member of the players’ council of the women’s tennis organization WTA.
“Hopefully we’ll hear from her personally at some point,” said the 32-year-old about Peng, whose well-being there are still strong doubts: “I think that’s the main goal at the moment.”
Last November, Peng reported on sexual abuse by China’s ex-Vice Prime Minister Zhang Gaoli in a short-lived post on the Chinese short message service Weibo.
Her subsequent absence from the public led to protests and demands from numerous prominent colleagues and institutions such as the WTA for independently verifiable safety guarantees for the athlete.
Most recently, top Spanish player Garbine Muguruza had expressed concern about the lack of clarification in the Peng case. “It goes by month after month, but somehow it doesn’t go forward,” criticized the two-time major winner.