Kalinina, Tsurenko hoping second-round match can help war-torn Ukraine

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Ukrainian pair Kalinina and Tsurenko came through their first-round tests with Anna Bondar and Jodie Burrage respectively on Tuesday (AEST) to advance to the next stage.

Both players receive £50,000 for progressing, while £78,000 is up for grabs for the winner of their midweek meeting at the All England Club.

And given the events in Ukraine, where thousands have been killed or wounded since Russia invaded in February and at least 12 million have fled, motivation is not an issue.

"I feel that I play better, just because for me emotionally winning or losing doesn't exist any more," Tsurenko said. "For me, there is a big issue in my life: it's war. And there is nothing else that can beat this.

"I think with all the sportsmen that are able to take part in the competitions, also with all the singers that go to Poland, to Germany, and having all the concerts, that part when Ukrainians can just go and remind the whole world that we are here, we still have war and we need your help.

"This is the main thing that I would wish to happen, that we get a lot of heavy weapons. It's just that we should remind with the fact that we are here and we are playing for my country, for Ukraine. We just want to remind that Ukraine is in trouble and we need help."

Kalinina, who revealed her parents' house in Irpin had been bombed, added: "I understand it’s hard to focus, but for me it matters if I win or if I lose. The more I win, I'm not only helping my family, I'm helping other families and other people.

"You go further. You earn more money. Then I'm able to help, and I'm helping as much as I can and not only to my family. So for me that matters. I'm not a superstar so I'm helping with what I can. And it's a lot to them, and for me that's huge motivation to play. Huge."


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