Fri Jun 24 11:16am EDT
Chair umpire Graeme Jones was mangling the name of German tennis player Julia Goerges at Wimbledon on Thursday, mispronouncing her name in various ways but especially in saying her last name as "gorgeous." It's a joke Goerges has heard many times before. "Julia Gorgeous" they call her, partially because she's attractive but mostly because of the similarity in spelling.
While the crowd tittered at the bungling of the name, Goerges seethed. When a call went against her, she let Jones know it. The world No. 16 loudly confronted the chair umpire in the middle of the match:
"You need glasses. This is the first time you have opened your mouth and it is a call on an over-rule on set point. Also, learn how to pronounce my name properly."
It's pronounced gur-guess (like gurgle).
If we're going to get technical about it, Julia, the chair umpire must have opened his mouth earlier than the overrule on set point or else you wouldn't have known he was mispronouncing your name. How do you explain that fallacy?
Not that Goerges doesn't have a point. You'd assume that one of the few preparations a chair umpire needs to make, besides bringing Chapstick and remembering to uncross his legs, would be to learn how to pronounce the names of the players. And though Goerges isn't easy to pronounce, once you get it down, it shouldn't be difficult. This wasn't a match between Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Anne Keothavong after all.
In the chair umpire's defense, Goerges' name isn't one of the 120 names listed in the pronunciation list in the WTA's media guide. Li Na is on there, as is Maria Sharapova, Ana Ivanovic and Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez (a long name, to be sure, but not one that's particularly difficult to say). No Goerges, though.
Adding to the confusion is that Goerges spells her name with an umlaut -- Görges -- and that's going to throw off anyone not familiar with the German, like the British chair umpire.
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