If the Adelaide tournament is a sort of general tennis rehearsal for players before the Australian Open, it is also stylistically so. It is indeed there that Viktoria Azarenka was able to make some adjustments to her stage entrance outfit. Appeared with the PSG away jersey from last season, this one had its ears pulled by the chair umpire for having contravened the dress rules in force.
In question, the main sponsor of the Parisian club at the time, Accor Live Limitless. But it obviously takes more for the double winner of the Australian Open (2012 and 2013), who will face the Russian Elena Rybakina in the semi-finals this Thursday, to abandon her Parisian shirt. In Melbourne, since the start of the tournament, she has arrived on the courts with the PSG 2022-2023 home shirt stripped of its sponsor.
“She was refused by the organizers of the Australian Open because she was not allowed to enter with the official shirt for a sponsor story, but she managed to remove them and thus be able to enter the court with before each of his matches, confirms Michelle Gilbert, the new Director of Corporate Communication of Paris Saint-Germain. She’s a long-time PSG fan and she’s really into it! We exchanged a little by SMS when we saw that she was wearing our jersey, she continues. She explained to us that she and her son were great supporters of the club and she congratulated us for everything we have done with the club over the years. »
PSG supporter thanks to Beckham
If it is not uncommon to see high-level sportsmen and women wear the Parisian shirt, especially NBA players, it is usually a kind of deal with the equipment supplier Nike, which kindly invites its foals to wear the PSG jersey to boost sales in North America a little. With the 33-year-old Belarusian, none of that, therefore. His passion for PSG, which could not be more sincere, was born from the 2012-2013 season, with the signing of David Beckham in the French capital. The proof, that the English will not have been completely useless in the end.
“I have supported PSG for more than ten years now, shortly after the arrival of Qatar, she explained at a press conference in recent days. I had friends there when I played tennis. I also worked a lot with Aspetar (the medical center in Doha where PSG players sometimes go to treat their injuries). I also did events in Paris related to football, so I always revolved around them. »
As for the shirt she proudly wears before and after every game in Melbourne, it’s a nod to her six-year-old son – Leo, a fan of Messi AS BY CHANCE – who dreams of a career in football, and even more at Paris Saint-Germain. “It’s just a cool thing between him and me,” she told The Team. I like it and he loves it, when he saw it he said to me: “Mom, you’re wearing the Paris jersey!” We have the same one, we match, it’s kind of our thing. And when I’m away, it’s like a connection with him”.
When is the kick-off at the Parc des Princes?
For those, and we hear them from here, who would dare to question the sincerity of the love that the player has for the Parisian club, know that Azarenka has nothing of the footix who would support Paname because it is in tune with the times. Always to our colleagues from The Team : “I follow Ligue 1 but also the Champions League, come on! You have to have ambition. I try to watch the matches as much as I can, but I never miss the highlights. I couldn’t watch their last meeting (7-0 in the Coupe de France, Monday, against Pays de Cassel) because of the time difference and my match, but when I woke up I saw Mbappé’s five goals. He is truly amazing. »
Something to fuel the discussions with his young French coach, Maxime Tchoutakian (29), from Aix en Provence and a big fan of OM. “We joke about that, we go to bed, it’s a good squabble. I leave him his PSG jersey, I have that of OM warm at home and I will wear it when I get back, ”he laughed with our colleague from RMC present in Australia.
The two will then surely have the opportunity to debate which of the two stadiums, between the Parc des Princes and the Vélodrome, is the most volcanic. Even if, for Azarenka, the question is quickly answered: “The Parc des Princes is the best stadium in my opinion, she assured The Team. Even though it’s not as big as the others, the atmosphere is crazy. I took my son and my nephew this year, their eyes were shining with joy. It makes incredible memories, engraved for life, for them as for me. »
Contacted by 20 minutes, the club was unable to tell us more about the player’s arrival but, according to our calculations, last season’s calendar and the information released by Maxime Tchoutakian, it must have been PSG-Metz won by 5 -0, with in particular a hat-trick from Kylian Mbappé, at the end of the season, on the eve of the start of Roland-Garros. On her return from Melbourne, whether or not she wins the Australian Open, Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, himself a former tennis player, would be well advised to invite her to kick off a match. . In his place anyway, that’s what we would do.