Andriy Shevchenko to attend Iga Świątek’s charity tennis match for Ukraine

Andriy Shevchenko and Iga Swiatek

Ukrainian football legend Andriy Shevchenko will attend a charity tennis match organised by Iga Świątek.

The world number one announced the news on Instagram, revealing she had been organising the event for “months”.

The exhibition match will be held at the Tauron Arena in Kraków on July 23rd.

“For months I have been working with my team on a charity initiative for Ukraine to support those who suffer because of the war,” she wrote.

“Together with Agnieszka Radwańska, Elina Svitolina, Sergiy Stakhovsky and Martyn Pawelski, we will meet in Krakow on 23rd July during a special event.

“We will play a mixed doubles exhibition match. Additionally, Agnieszka and I will play one set of singles. Both matches will be umpired by Elina Svitolina. There will also be a special guest representing Ukraine – former football player Andriy Shevchenko.

“Total proceeds from the event will be donated to the support of children and teenagers affected by the war in Ukraine.”

Świątek said she was “so happy and grateful” to be holding the event, and hoped it would “show the strength of sport when it unites us in helping, and gives us at least a little joy.”

The Polish star, who is currently playing at Wimbledon, has previously spoken out in support of Ukraine, which was invaded by Russian forces in February.

Ukrainian players have continued to play on the WTA Tour, but Svitolina, the current world number 40, has taken a break from tennis to focus her efforts on raising funds for her country.

She and Shevchenko ​​have been named ambassadors of UNITED24, an organisation set up by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to raise funds for medical supplies, defence and the rebuilding of the country’s infrastructure.

Ukrainian tennis player Elina Svitolina

The 45-year-old Shevchenko played as a striker for Dynamo Kyiv, AC Milan, Chelsea during an illustrious career, winning the Ballon d’Or in 2004 for his goalscoring exploits.

He entered politics following his retirement from football in 2012, but failed to get elected to the Ukrainian Parliament.

Shevchenko returned to football as a manager, becoming head coach of the Ukrainian national team in 2016 and leading the country to the quarter-finals at Euro 2020.

He announced his departure from the role last year, before a short stint as head coach of Serie A side Genoa.

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