Courting Tennis Etiquette

Are you serious?????? Tennis star John McInroe at his brattish worst, harassing officials

Bring on the men

By Roger Childs

The popular David Ferrer

The ASB women’s tournament with probably be remembered more for on-court antics and the under-whelming performances of some of the seeds, than for the quality of the tennis.

The men are now in action, and fans will be looking forward to seeing stars such as the evergreen David Ferrer; the skyscraper John Isner; the talented Roberto Batista Agut and the unpredictable Marcos Baghdartis, show their skills.

The Auckland tournament organiser, Karl Budge, will probably be delighted to have the women’s event behind him and move on to the men’s tournament.

Not living up to expectations

It was a bad start to the ASB Women’s Classic, when the popular Ana Ivanovic pulled out as a consequence of her retirement from professional tennis.

Budge had spent years trying to entice Serena Williams to come to Auckland, but her appearance last week was a public relations disaster.

The top seed was clearly over-wrought and over-weight, and was consequently bundled out in the second round by a lowly ranked Madison Brengle. Serena didn’t win any friends with her on-court histrionics and post-match expletives about the wind. Don’t expect her to front up in next year’s tournament.

Other seeds dropped like flies, with Venus Williams and Naomi Osaka having to retire and Caroline Wozniacki being taken out in the quarter-finals. In the end the one-sided final was won by the unseeded Lauren Davis 6-3, 6-1.

And the New Zealand competitors did not distinguish themselves.

Jade who?

Jade Lewis has some learning to do

Marina Erakovic was well beaten in her first game, so the fans wondered how 18 year old Jade Lewis would do. She is ranked 1099! in the world, so wasn’t expected to trouble the experienced pro Venus Williams.

However in the first set she did well and at 6-5 should have gone one up in the best of three. However, Venus won the tiebreak and took the second set comfortably 6-2. Along the way Lewis was guilty of some racket bashing and outbursts, which did not impress the crowd.

Game over she went to the net and what did she do? Say Well done Venus, thanks for the game.  It’s been a privilege to play against one of the legends of the modern era.

No, she just slapped the American’s hand as if she was handing over in a relay. It was brattish stuff and unworthy of her.

Courtly behaviour

Williams and Lewis did not provide great examples for young tennis players. It is always impressive to see most women competitors and male stars, like Federer, Nishikori, Djokovic and Nadal, behave impeccably on the courts of the world and warmly congratulate each other at the end of matches.

Top golfers and cricketers don’t throw their clubs and bats around when they play a poor shot or get out. Serena should know better and Jade Lewis needs to learn fast.

Hopefully the men in Auckland will not only thrill the crowds with the quality of their play, but also provide good role models for young people taking up the game.