Peer makes history with emphatic victory

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Fewer than 100 spectators witnessed the occasion, but Shahar Peer celebrated her achievement as the first Israeli woman to appear at the Barclays Dubai Championships with a resounding victory yesterday.

Peer, who was refused a visa to play in the tournament 12 months ago following Israel's military offensive in Gaza, beat Yanina Wickmayer 3-6, 6-2, 7-5. "I really wanted to win this match, not only because of tennis, but to make a statement that politics and sport should not be involved," Peer said afterwards. "There were a lot of emotions for me."

Her exclusion 12 months ago by the UAE government led to a $300,000 fine on the tournament.