The Ukrainian Dayana Yastremska said she would be donating her prize money to help support her homeland after finishing as runner-up to Zhang Shuai at the Lyon Open.
The 21-year-old Yastremska and her 15-year-old sister, Ivanna, spent two nights sheltering in an underground car park after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine before being sent to safety in France by their parents.
After Sunday’s 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 defeat by Zhang, Yastremska, draped in her country’s flag, said: “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.”