Should we be stricter with bad behavior on the pitch?

Another. That adds this season to an already long list. Daniil Medvedev’s rage at the referee in his Australian Open semifinal against Stefanos Tsitsipas. Alexander Zverev’s mad kick hits another referee’s chair in Acapulco. Nick Kyrgios nearly injured a bat boy swinging his racket after losing to Rafael Nadal in Indian Wells. Here are the most famous. In another register, Wednesday, in Monte-Carlo, Alexander Bublik decided to give up the entire third set against Pablo Carreño Busta. Broken, the erratic troublemaker sailed out of Kazakhstan on a whim. He didn’t want to play anymore.

Total crack: Broken, Bublik leaves the match in the middle of the 3rd set

The behavioral aspect of players (again) becomes a topic. Is this a bad thing for tennis? Where and how do you set the limits? Is the ATP too lax? On the other hand, is the code too rigid? What are these behaviors called? So many questions that, as the file gets thicker about the tournaments, come up with an increasing urgency.

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Ironically, before his roof billowed against Carreño Busta on Wednesday, Alexander Bublik had spoken… the day before to ask for more freedom on the pitch. Notably, in an interview with Tennis Channel, he was Nick Kyrgios’ lawyer: “Nick brings a lot of fans to tennis. Even in doubles. Do you know many players who bring in the crowd for doubles? What do people want? Why are they coming? To see men in suits on the field? It’s sport, it’s supposed to bring a little emotion and it tries to put us in some kind of cage where we can’t talk

Bloodstroke: Kyrgios swings his racket after his loss to Nadal

I don’t want to see computers and machines on the track

After the US tour in Indian Wells and Miami and in light of recent incidents, the ATP tried to raise their voices: “Referees urge tougher action when reviewing Code of Conduct violationsA very bad thing, according to Alexander Bublik: “I don’t think it’s good for the sport. Maybe when you’re 65 and coming with your grandkids you don’t want to hear bad words, but I’m not a fan of stricter rules. For me we should have more freedom. Sure, there are limits and there are things we can’t do, but stop looking at us suspiciously every time we talk.

For Henin, some players go too far: ‘There is an unacceptable escalation’

Boris Becker belongs to a different generation, where behavior was not always more virtuous than it is today, or even less so in the case of players like John McEnroe or Jimmy Connors or, to a lesser extent, Becker himself. †It’s much harder for players today‘, judges the three-time winner of Wimbledon in the podcast of our colleagues from Eurosport Germany this Thursday.

I’m pretty glad I played in a time when social networks didn’t exist and there weren’t microphones everywhere on the pitchhe adds. Nowadays everything is extremely transparent. Too transparent for my taste. Tennis is also entertainment. I don’t want to see computers and machines on the field. Seeing emotions is a good thing. It takes a bit of blood, sweat and tears, that was already the case in our time and it stimulates everyone. But everything must have a limit

Ruud: ‘It has to stop’

A position very close to that of a Bublik and can be summarized as follows: leave the players alone, but set limits. But where are they? There’s the question. The Zverev case is arguably the one that has sparked the most debate. Breaking a racket, yelling, swearing, talking badly to a referee, that’s one thing. But from the attitude of the German player emerged a higher level of violence. He certainly didn’t touch the umpire (luckily that he raised his feet) but it was more shocking to see a player persist on the chair like this. Because it is extremely rare. Because we can think of the referee’s seat as a kind of sanctuary. Attacking her is already, even symbolically, attacking him.

Two months of no play and a $25,000 suspended fine: should Zverev be punished more?

However, the sanction seemed relatively mild: loss of points earned during the tournament and heavy fines. But no suspension other than with postponement. †If that’s not a limit, where is it? asks Mats Wilander. For me, Zverev should not have been on probation, he should have been banned from the track for a month, two months for the next Grand Slam, or the next Masters 1000, I don’t know. But at least slightly more difficult than ‘Don’t start over, it’s no good’. That makes no sense. That’s not how life works

Casper Ruud, a much more neutral player, agrees with the Swede. †This has to stopproclaims the Miami finalist in the first issue of his show on Eurosport “Ruud Talk Vodcast”“. There have been two or three cases in less than a month. This is irresponsible behavior. I don’t want to see this, it brings negative attention to our sport.“If the Norwegian does not decide on the nature of the sanctions to be applied, he doubts whether simple fines will be enough to calm the most angry.”To some it seems like it doesn’t matter, he said. I don’t know what a fair punishment would be, but I have a feeling we could have a major accident at any moment

One point than a penalty game: Kyrgios loses to Sinner

Looking for balance

I’m not sure if it’s necessary to reinvent rules or new sanctions, pleads for his part Becker† They exist. The question is what needs to be done on the pitch before a player is banned?“However, the former German champion does not believe in the virtues of unpacking dirty laundry in the public square. In his view, this should all be arranged within the family:”I don’t like players criticizing each other. Everyone should look in the mirror. Nobody is perfect, everyone can crack sometimes. For me the players are colleagues, they should not criticize the behavior of so-and-so publicly. It’s not a good thing

Tennis, a bit schizophrenic, therefore seems to be looking for some form of balance. For a long time it was criticized for being too polite and the main stars for being too formatted. Today the cursor moves under the influence of recent events. The public wants “characters”. Others cry out for the duty to set an example. The same, sometimes. †Tennis is a game where you learn a lot about life, rules and education, says Mats Wilander, convinced of the importance of the responsibility of the great figures of the circuit. Lleyton Hewitt told me that in Australia all children want to be like Nick Kyrgios“, he says. For the best … and for the rest.

In short, the mistake can be to think that a player’s charisma and the attraction he can generate with the audience necessarily goes through this kind of behavior. The most magnetic player in tennis history, Björn Borg is also the coldest champion to step on a court. He never broke a racket or said one word higher than another. Also not lower. However, no one, before or after him, attracted more people to tennis.

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