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Video: Victoria Azarenka blasts umpire on way to first loss of year

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Victoria Azarenka

Victoria Azarenka’s loss at the Madrid Open was her first defeat of the year. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Victoria Azarenka lost her cool and ripped the chair umpire on Wednesday during her first loss of the year.

Azarenka’s 18-match winning streak to begin 2013 ended with a 1-6, 6-2, 6-3 loss to 24th-ranked Ekaterina Makarova in the second round of the Madrid Open. The world No. 3 unraveled after blazing through the first set, as Azarenka dropped the last five games of the match and hit 41 unforced errors overall.

Azarenka’s frustration boiled over in the third set and umpire Mariana Alves took the brunt of it. In the first point of the seventh game, Azarenka sent a slice forehand long and smashed her racket in disgust. Alves gave her a code violation for racket abuse. Unbeknownst to Azarenka, it was her second code violation of the match (she received a code violation for an audible obscenity earlier), meaning an automatic point penalty and a 30-0 lead for Makarova. An incredulous Azarenka lashed out at Alves.

“Are you kidding me? I didn’t say anything,” Azarenka argued, referring to her first code violation for an audible obscenity. “What are you talking about?”

Unconvinced by Alves’ explanation, Azarenka continued: “You got to be kidding me. You got to be kidding me! How are you still on the bench? After all you’ve done, how are you still in the game?”

Azarenka could have been referring to Alves’ controversial history. The Portuguese umpire was in the chair during the infamous 2004 U.S. Open quarterfinal between Serena Williams and Jennifer Capriati. That match is remembered for an incorrect overrule by Alves that went against Williams (who received an apology from the USTA afterward) and other inaccurate line calls that she did not overrule. The match helped spur the implementation of the Hawk-Eye instant-replay system in tennis.

Here’s video of Wednesday’s incident:

  • Published On May 08, 2013
  • 8 comments
    DanielLeeHorton
    DanielLeeHorton

    The players should lead a charge to getting this incompetent fool fired!  Serena should lead the charge and I am sure other top female players will follow and get the guys involved too.  She is a cancer on the game.

    spystud
    spystud

    Yeah, I don't know if Courtney personally handpicks these photos, but sometimes they are just brutal. 

     

    It's also pretty well-documented that she's not exactly Vika's biggest fan either. 

    dj13e29
    dj13e29

    That is the worst picture I've ever seen of VA. Wow!

    IdaAnnaTaylor
    IdaAnnaTaylor

    What Alves did back in 2004 is irrelevent to this incident.  Did Alves blow it in the Capriati/Williams match?  Absolutely!  100%.  Serena got screwed big time.  But that has zero to do with this match.

    NoniMissMouse
    NoniMissMouse

    ": “You got to be kidding me. You got to be kidding me! How are you still on the bench? After all you’ve done, how are you still in the game?”"

     

    Vika got it right!

    emma1
    emma1

    have to agree with azarenka on this one - alves cheated serena so badly at the 2004 us open that she should have been banned for life!!

    Tabby388
    Tabby388

     @IdaAnnaTaylor

     She was actually doing so badly that the penalty she got made no difference in her losing.  She had a bad day, got frustrated and acted out, but the penalty was actually meaningless in the grand scheme of things.