Russia's Andrey Rublev has been elected to the ATP Player Advisory Council, despite currently having to play under a neutral flag because of his country's invasion of Ukraine ©Getty Images

Russian player Andrey Rublev and Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov have joined the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) Player Advisory Council for 2023, having held their first meeting of the year on the eve of the Australian Open in Melbourne.

The pair are joined by Spaniards Pedro Martínez and Bernabé Zapata Miralles as singles representatives.

Dutch player Wesley Koolhof is the top representative for doubles players, having reached the world number one spot in the men's doubles with Britain's Neal Skupski at the end of 2022 - the same year he won his first Grand Slam title, lifting the French Open mixed doubles title with Ena Shibahara from Japan.

Harri Heliövaara of Finland is the other doubles player on the Council.

Argentina singles player Pedro Cachín and two-time Grand Slam doubles winner Matthew Ebden from Australia were elected too as at-large members.

Venezuelan Daniel Vallverdú, the current trainer of Dimitrov, is the coach representative, while Venezuelan former player Nicolás Pereira joins the Council as the alumni representative.

World number five Rublev's inclusion comes at a time where players from Russia and Belarus can only compete in ATP and Women's Tennis Association competitions neutrally, under the auspices of the International Tennis Federation, following Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine last year. 

Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov is the other high-profile player added to the ATP Player Advisory Council ©Getty Images
Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov is the other high-profile player added to the ATP Player Advisory Council ©Getty Images

Former world number three Dimitrov claimed he had been asked previously, but felt now was the correct time to join the Council.

"I've been asked so many times in the past but I just never felt it was the right time and the right fit for me at the time," the 31-year-old, whose best Grand Slam was reaching the third round of the French Open in 2013, said.

"I think now I'm in a position where I've got a few years behind me, I have the experience on the court, I have experience with the players and I'm looking forward to it."

The ATP Player Advisory Council meets several times a year and forwards recommendations to the governing body and its Board of Directors.

Serbian world number one Novak Djokovic used to be ATP Player Advisory Council President, but resigned due to concerns over player interest, forming the Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA) with Canada's Vasek Pospisil.

The PTPA recently formed its Executive Committee, which includes the likes of Tunisian women's player Ons Jabeur.