Novak Djokovic after striking lineswoman with ball: So unintended, so wrong

Novak Djokovic was dramatically disqualified from the US Open on Sunday after accidentally striking a female line judge with a ball in frustration during his Last 16 match, sending shock waves through the tournament.

The World No. 1 apologised for hitting the ball in disgust after losing his serve to go 6-5 down in the first set to Spain's 20th seed Pablo Carreno Busta inside Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Djokovic appeared to be looking the other way when he pulled the ball from his pocket and smacked it in the direction of the official, it hitting her full toss in the throat.

Djoko alarmed

The official cried out and began gasping for air as she collapsed to the ground. Djokovic rushed over to check on her, placing his hand on her back as she struggled to breathe. After a few minutes she got up and walked off the court looking dazed. Around 10 minutes of discussions then ensued between Djokovic and the tournament referee Soeren Friemel, during which the World No. 1 pleaded his case.

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic

The umpire then declared that Carreno Busta had won by default. Djokovic shook hands with his opponent before leaving the court without appearing to shake the umpire's hand.

He went then directly to his car and left the Flushing Meadows site in New York without speaking to reporters. Djokovic, 33, later posted an apology on Instagram saying he was "so sorry."

"This whole situation has left me really sad and empty," he wrote, adding that "thank God" the woman was okay. "I'm extremely sorry to have caused her such stress. So unintended. So wrong," Djokovic said. He also apologised to tournament organisers for "my behaviour" but did not say whether he thought they were right to default him.

Zero points, no prize money

The United States Tennis Association said Djokovic had been defaulted under the Grand Slam rules for "intentionally hitting a ball dangerously or recklessly within the court or hitting a ball with negligent disregard of the consequences." The body added that he would lose all ranking points and prize money from the tournament.

'Angrily and recklessly'

Referee Friemel said Djokovic told him he should not be defaulted because it was unintentional. Friemel said he agreed there was no intent but that it was a clear-cut case of Djokovic hitting the ball "angrily and recklessly." "She was clearly hurt and in pain. There was no other option," he told reporters.

The Serbian star is one of only a handful of players to be disqualified from a men's singles tournament at a Grand Slam since John McEnroe was infamously tossed from the Australian Open in 1990. Djokovic had been chasing an 18th Grand Slam title at the Billie Jean King US National Tennis Center.

Keep scrolling to read more news

Catch up on all the latest sports news and updates here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates.

Mid-Day is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@middayinfomedialtd) and stay updated with the latest news

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever



from Latest news in Mumbai,National news,Mumbai news,Mid-Day epaper,Mid-Day online news paper | Mid-Day
Read The Rest:mid-day...

Post a comment

0 Comments