Novak Djokovic out of U.S. Open after accidental hit of line judge
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Novak Djokovic, the No. 1 men’s player and No. 1 seed, was defaulted from the United States Open on Sunday after inadvertently striking a lineswoman with a ball hit in frustration.
Djokovic was defaulted when trailing 5-6 in the first set in the fourth round against Pablo Carreño Busta. He had just lost his serve after being treated for pain in his left shoulder earlier in the game.
After losing the final point of the game, he pulled a ball from his pocket and smacked it with his racket toward the back of the court. It hit the lineswoman, who was standing, in the throat. She dropped to the ground, and Djokovic quickly came over to check on her condition.
But after a lengthy discussion with tournament referee Soeren Friemel, Djokovic was defaulted.
“Players have been defaulted for less,” said Darren Cahill, the veteran coach who was sitting courtside in Arthur Ashe Stadium covering the match for ESPN. “I think the tournament made the right decision.”
The stunning turn of events guarantees that there will be a first-time Grand Slam men’s singles champion at the U.S. Open. Djokovic, who has won 17 major singles titles, was the only player left in the draw who had won a Grand Slam singles title.
Carreño Busta, the 20th seed from Spain, advanced to the quarterfinals with the default.
The Russian tennis player Yana Sizikova has been arrested in Paris by French police as part of a match-fixing investigation. Sizikova, a 26-year-old doubles specialist, was taken into custody on Thursday night in relation to an investigation dating back to October for sports corruption and organized gang fraud.
A few hours after Serena Williams walked out of Rod Laver Arena, beaten in the late stages of a grand slam tournament once more, the Eurosport team had converged in front of the cameras to discuss the day’s play. There stood Barbara Schett, last active 15 years ago, who played against Williams three times, and via video link, Williams’s former rival Justine Henin, who retired in Melbourne 10 years ago.
Serena Williams is not concerned that finally breaking through for her record-equaling 24th major singles title at the US Open would be cheapened by the thinned-out field as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Mehrere Profis hatten bereits abgesagt, doch das Grand-Slam-Turnier in New York soll trotz Corona stattfinden. Es gelten aber strenge Hygiene- und Sicherheitsauflagen.