This is a proper tennis meltdown.
World No. 5 Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic lost a close second-round match to Greece’s Maria Sakkari on Wednesday at the Italian Open after incompetent officiating cost her a point late in the third set.
The controversy starts at the 5:35 mark of the video here.
Pliskova calls on higher authority after terrible call
With the game tied at 40-40 in a 5-5 third set, Pliskova scored what looked like an obvious point on an overhead smash that landed just inside the court. The broadcast’s score bug had already marked the point, scoring the game advantage Pliskova, before the line judge ruled the ball out to the dismay of the crowd.
Chair umpire Marta Mrozinska asked for clarification from the line judge and explained to a pleading Pliskova that the line judge’s ruling would stand since there was no mark on the clay to prove otherwise.
Pliskova asked for a WTA supervisor, who provided no help despite replay clearly showing that the ball was in.
Pliskova went on to lose the game and eventually the match.
Then this happened.
Pliskova loses cool, smashes hole in umpire chair
— The Overrule (@theoverrule) May 16, 2018
Pliskova shook hands with Sakkari before pulling an okey-doke handshake on Mrozinska and smashing a hole in her chair with her racket.
And, really, who can blame her? Though clearly not the most professional of responses, Pliskova got soundly jobbed on a routine call at a critical juncture of the match.
Hawk-eye technology could have prevented this
The incident has raised calls for the use of hawk-eye replay technology often seen on other surfaces but rarely used on clay because of ball marks left on the soft surface.
Former top-ranked doubles player Rennae Stubbs:
I love when you all have your thoughts! Listen she will look back and probably regret she did that but understand your busting your ass for 3 hours and u feel like you’ve just been robbed by someone who has ALL THE POWER. Use Hawkeye!!! It’s ridiculous!!!
— rennae stubbs (@rennaestubbs) May 16, 2018
Pliskova’s coach Thomas Krupa was less subtle with his feelings after the match.
Thomas Krupa, coach of Pliskova, after the match pic.twitter.com/z6hJIk7zYI
— . (@returnofserve) May 16, 2018
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