Dayana Yastremska vows to donate prize money to Ukraine after losing Lyon Open final

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Tennis star Dayana Yastremska who fled war-torn Odessa vows to donate her prize money to help support her homeland Ukraine after she is beaten by Shuai Zhang in the Lyon Open final

  • Dayana Yastremska lost in the final of the Lyon Open to Shuai Zhang on Sunday
  • It comes just over a week after she fled war-torn Odessa after help from parents 
  • She has vowed to donate her prize money to victims of the war in Ukraine 


Dayana Yastremska said she would be donating her prize money to help support her homeland Ukraine after she was beaten in the final of the Lyon Open by Shuai Zhang.

Yastremska, 21, and her 15-year-old sister Ivanna spent two nights sheltering in an underground car park amid the war in Ukraine before being sent to safety in France by their parents.

Despite Russia’s invasion of her homeland, she opted to play at the Lyon Open where remarkably she managed to make the final. 

Following Sunday’s 3-6 6-3 6-4 loss to Zhang, Yastremska, draped in a Ukrainian flag, said on court: ‘The prize money I earned here I’m going to give to the Ukrainian foundation to support the Ukraine.

‘And if Ukrainian people are watching me, I want to say you guys are so strong, you have an amazing spirit.

‘I try to fight for Ukraine. I want to say thanks to every single person from Ukraine for standing by the Ukraine and showing people that we have a really strong spirit.’

China’s Zhang said: ‘Big congrats to Dayana and your team, working so hard. I know it is a big tough time for you but you are a fighter.’

Dayana Yastremska fled war-torn Odessa over a week ago and competed at the Lyon Open

Dayana Yastremska fled war-torn Odessa over a week ago and competed at the Lyon Open

Yastremska posted a picture on her Instagram account the day after the invasion of her country by Russia.

She was pictured with her sister sitting on luggage and wearing matching pink sweatpants and hoodies.

”After spending two nights in the underground parking, my parents made a decision at any cost to send me and my little sister out of Ukraine!’ she said.

She has vowed to donate her prize money to support Ukraine after finishing runner-up

She has vowed to donate her prize money to support Ukraine after finishing runner-up

‘Mom, Dad, we love you very much, take care of yourself!!! I love you my country! Ukrainians take care of your lives.’

The following day she posted in an Instagram story, which showed their arrival to Romania en route to France.

She wrote: ‘Tired, but my sister and I are safe. Thank you France. Ukraine stay strong. We miss you Home, Mum and Dad.’

Dayana Yastremska (left) has been forced to leave Ukraine by boat amid the Russian invasion

Dayana Yastremska (left) has been forced to leave Ukraine by boat amid the Russian invasion

The world No 21 arrived in France with her younger sister after leaving their parents in Odessa

The world No 21 arrived in France with her younger sister after leaving their parents in Odessa

Yastremska, has won three WTA titles during her career and has been ranked as high as world No 21. 

Former tennis player Sergiy Stakhovsky, has joined the fight against the invasion of his home country.

Stakhovsky, who was once ranked 31 in the world and defeated Roger Federer at Wimbledon in 2013, is among a number of athletes who have travelled to Ukraine to join the resistance effort.

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