‘Don’t Blow This Out of Proportion,’ Serbian Volleyball Team Says After Player Pulls Slant-Eye Gesture

The Volleyball Federation of Serbia officially apologized to the Thailand volleyball team after one of the Serbian players pulled a slant-eye gesture while on the court.

What happened: The racist gesture happened during the match between Thailand and Serbia for the Volleyball Women’s Nations League 2021 in Rimini, Italy, Coconuts Bangkok reported.

  • Serbian player Sanja Djurdjevic was talking to her teammate when she pulled the racist gesture.
  • Serbia won the match with a 0-3 score.

  • The incident went viral on social media, with a TikTok video showing that this wasn’t the first time the team made the racist gesture.
  • In 2017, the team made the gesture while posing for a photo, after they won the European championships, which landed them a spot in World Championships in Japan.

The apology: The Volleyball Federation of Serbia apologized to the Thailand volleyball team on Tuesday.

  • In the statement, the federation said Djurdjevic “immediately apologized to the whole Thailand team.”
  • “She only wanted to show her teammates ‘let’s start playing defense like them now,’” the statement said, adding “she didn’t mean any disrespect.”
  • The Volleyball Federation of Serbia asked the public not to “blow this out of proportion,” describing the incident as “unfortunate” and “a simple misunderstanding.”

Other details: Thai player Pleumjit Thinkaow, who was reportedly the target of the gesture during the match, posted a video on Instagram accepting the Serbian player’s apology on Tuesday.

  • “Everyone. [Djurdjevic] walked to our room. She said she was so stressed. She said she didn’t have the intention [to offend us]. Please forgive her,” Pleumjit wrote, Fox Sports Australia reported.

Featured Image via @foxblucasx

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