Russian tennis players could be allowed to play at Wimbledon in 2023 after they were banned from playing at last year's event. 

Russian and Belarusian tennis players were barred from taking part in Wimbledon 2022 as a show of support for Ukraine by the All England Club and championship management. 

Chairman of the All England Club, Ian Hewitt, in a statement last year said: “We recognise that this is hard on the individuals affected, and it is with sadness that they will suffer for the actions of the leaders of the Russian regime.

"We have very carefully considered the alternative measures that might be taken within the UK Government guidance. 

"But, given the high profile environment of The Championships, the importance of not allowing sport to be used to promote the Russian regime and our broader concerns for public and player (including family) safety, we do not believe it is viable to proceed on any other basis at The Championships.”

With this year's Wimbledon tournament just four months away, conversations have started around whether this ban will be lifted in 2023, with a decision expected shortly. 

British tennis icon Andy Murray said his understanding is the ban will be lifted this year to allow Russian and Belarusian players to compete at the championships in July.

Speaking to BBC Sports, Murray said: "My understanding is that they are going to be allowed to play and I'm not going to be going nuts if that is the case.

"But if Wimbledon went down another route I would be understanding of that.

"It's a really difficult one and I do feel for the players who weren't able to play last year - but I also understand the situation and why it's really hard for Wimbledon to make a call on it as well."

Players affected by the decision include former men's world no. 1 and current No. 6 Daniil Medvedev (Russia) and women's no. 2 Aryna Sabalenka (Belarus) who is the current Australian Open champion. 

News Shopper: Danill Medvedev and Sabalenka Aryna are two players affected by the decisionDanill Medvedev and Sabalenka Aryna are two players affected by the decision (Image: Twitter)

Good Morning Britain (GMB) also said they had seen reports that suggested: "the All England Club will allow Russian players to compete". 

British World and Olympic Badmington medalist, Gail Emms, speaking to GMB, said: "It's an incredibly difficult decision. 

"This is not an easy subject at all and I don't know how we are going to come out of this. 

"You can't help where you are born, you just want to compete.

"I don't know what the solution is, there is no ideal solution in this horrible horrible situation.

"But all we can do is try and promote that sport has a way of showing that maybe you can bring people together, and the messages of no war on the cameras can show that everyone is an individual and there are Russain's out there that don't support this (the war in Ukraine)."

Ex-tennis professional Sergiy Stakhovsky, who is now fighting for Ukraine said he disagreed with the ban being lifted.

Speaking to GMB he said: "I hope it will not be lifted.

"It all looks like everybody is saying every individual has the right to their own opinion. 

"But we're not talking about opinions, we're not talking about any political stuff, it's just whether killing is ok or not ok and tennis players can't answer that question.

"For me it is just a bit immoral to be able to step out and ride the wave of neutrality.

"This is the most terrible act that Russia is doing over the past year and now trying to implement them back into the system of civil society would be a big mistake."