China has to stage four ATP events in 2022 despite ongoing concern over Peng Shuai's well-being ©Getty Images

China is scheduled to stage four Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) Tour events this year despite its counterpart, the Women's Tennis Association (WTA), suspending all tournaments in the country in response to concerns over the welfare of Peng Shuai.

The Chengdu Open and Zhuhai Championships are scheduled for September this year while the China Open in Beijing and Shanghai Masters are set to take place in October.

In December, the WTA chairman and chief executive Steve Simon said that the organisation could not ask athletes to compete in China when Peng "has seemingly been pressured to contradict her sexual assault allegation."

The decision was applauded by rights campaigners, and several leading men's players, but the ATP will not be following suit.

China usually hosts several tournaments every year - including the flagship WTA Finals - meaning that the suspension is likely to have a heavy financial impact on the WTA.

"The ATP continues to take a fluid approach to the calendar and the schedule remains subject to change," read an ATP statement accompanying the release of its calendar for the rest of 2022.

"Any further updates will be communicated in due course."

On November 2, Peng took to Chinese social media site Weibo to allege that Zhang Gaoli, a former senior vice-premier and high-ranking member of the ruling Chinese Communist Party, had sexually assaulted her 10 years ago.

The plight of Peng Shuai has caused international outcry ©Getty Images
The plight of Peng Shuai has caused international outcry ©Getty Images

The post was deleted within 20 minutes and Peng was reportedly not seen for more than two weeks afterwards.

This created global concern, especially from the WTA and several players, for Peng's well-being, but Chinese state media insisted that she was safe.

An email, which was claimed to come from Peng and sent to the WTA, said she was safe and well but was widely dismissed as being fabricated.

The three-time Olympian was seen attending multiple events at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games, and has retracted the allegations, but it has done little to quell concerns and Simon's request for a private meeting with Peng has not been met.

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach did meet Peng, in a move critics argue played into the hands of Chinese propaganda.

At the Australian Open, tennis' first Grand Slam of the year, numerous fans wore t-shirts emblazon with the question "Where is Peng Shuai?"

Security officials had initially stopped people from wearing the clothing, but were forced to backtrack and hundreds of t-shirts were handed out for the final.