The Serbian volleyball player who made a slant eye gesture while playing against Thai opponents has been suspended for two games, CNN reports.
Cameras caught Sanja Djurdjevic stretching her eyelids during Serbia’s June 1 match against Thailand in Italy. The FIVB Disciplinary Panel Sub-Committee released a statement saying the gesture violated disciplinary rules.
Djurdjevic issued an apology on her now deactivated Instagram account, CNN reports.
“I am aware of my mistake and I immediately after the match apologized to the whole Thailand team,” she wrote.
The Volleyball Federation of Serbia issued an apology on Facebook, calling the incident a “simple misunderstanding.”
“We apologize sincerely to the Thailand team, people of Thailand and to all of you affected by this,” the federation wrote.
“Please don’t blow this out of proportion! Sanja is aware of her mistake and she immediately apologized to the whole Thailand team. She only wanted to show her teammates ‘let’s start playing defense like the
Djurdjevic will miss Serbia’s matches against Canada and Belgium. FIVB has also fined the Volleyball Federation of Serbia 20,000 Swiss francs, BBC reports. The money will be given to “a cause tackling discriminatory behavior and/or to fund educational programs on cultural sensitivity for the global Volleyball Family.”
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