Coco Gauff Calls For Change Of ‘Ridiculous’ Tennis Rules After Controversial Loss To Iga Świątek

by Gee NY
Coco Gauff will take on Ons Jabeur in the French Open quarterfinals on Tuesday. (Foto Olimpik/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Coco Gauff is calling for reforms in tennis following a contentious umpire decision that contributed to her loss against Iga Świątek at the French Open.

During the semifinal match on Thursday, June 6, Gauff, 20, clashed with chair umpire Aurélie Tourte over a call that favored Świątek, 23.

The controversy arose when a line judge called Świątek’s serve “out,” but Tourte overruled the decision, declaring it “in.”

This reversal occurred while Gauff was leading 2-1 in the second set, prompting her to break down in tears. Gauff argued that she didn’t attempt to return the serve because of the initial “out” call.

Following the disputed call, Gauff advocated for the implementation of a video review system in tennis.

“Tennis is the only sport where not only do we not have the VR system, but a lot of times the decisions are made by one person. In other sports, there are usually multiple refs making a decision,” Gauff stated after the match, per CNN. “I know the U.S. Open brought some of it last year, and I know we used it in our doubles at one point. I definitely think at this point it’s almost ridiculous we don’t have it. Not just speaking because that happened to me, but I just think every sport has it.”

Gauff lamented the frustration of watching a match replay and realizing a call was missed:

“What does that give you in that moment? In situations, you can call for the supervisor, but there’s not much they can do from that standpoint. I definitely think as a sport we have to evolve, and we have the technology. They’re showing it on TV, so I don’t get why the player can’t see it.”

During the match, Gauff contested Tourte’s call, which ultimately cost her the game.

“Are you serious? They are booing you because you are wrong,” Gauff told Tourte, referring to the crowd’s reaction.

“I have the right to finish my swing,” Gauff argued, urging Tourte to consult the line judge. “He called it before I hit it… It’s a Grand Slam semifinal. Know the rules of the game.”

Tourte responded:

We cannot ask him,” which further frustrated Gauff. “To me, it didn’t affect the shot.”

Gauff, visibly upset, was heard saying:

“You should be ashamed,” and “Know the rules of the game,” in videos circulating on social media.

Świątek went on to defeat Gauff with a 6-2, 6-4 victory, marking her 20th match win at the French Open.

If she secures the grand prize, it would be her fourth victory in five years. Świątek described her match against Gauff as “intense” and attributed her success to consistency.

“I’m happy that I just was consistent with my tactics and didn’t overthink stuff and just went for it at the end,” she told reporters, per ESPN.

Addressing Gauff’s call for a video review system in professional tennis, Świątek agreed:

“It would be easier to have the replay… I don’t know how it would look, like, logistically. When can you ask an umpire to (show) a video replay or (whether) it’s up to her to do that. Because I think the umpire today was pretty sure with her call.”

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