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Sports Then and Now

Shocking Tennis Moments That I Never Expected Would Happen

Posted on April 26, 2017 by Aleksandra Udovenko

McEnroe-umpireTennis is full of shocking moments and memorable matches. With a full calendar of Open events and major tournaments this year, we can expect to see more madness before 2017 is over. Here is a look at some of my favorite moments in tennis history.

I like a good marathon match. Nothing beats the excitement of a tied game in which one competitor needs to win by two match points. With players so evenly matched, this format can lead to some interesting and time consuming tie-breakers.

Take the 2009 Wimbledon Grand Slam Final, in which Roger Federer played Andy Roddick for a whopping 4 hours and 17 minutes, then the longest men’s singles grand slam final in history. Federer eventually went on to win his 16th grand slam title, but it was by no means easy.

If you thought it couldn’t get any more tiring than that, then just look at the Australian Open match between Hewitt and Baghdatis in 2008. The pair played from midnight until the following morning.

In the 2010 Wimbledon Championships, a match between Isner and Mahut took a total of 11 hours and 5 minutes to play over the course of three days. The match is considered the longest in history. Legendary! Frenchman Nicolas Mahut finally went on to win the match, but how the pair survived such an intense game is beyond me.

Tennis has had some fine marathon moments and epic showdowns, but it has also suffered from bad publicity at times due to the sporadic behaviors of professionals throwing tantrums.

In the BMW Open 2006, Jurgen Melzer did the unthinkable. He turned around mid-game and smashed a tennis ball into a section of the crowd in a rage. Allegedly, a spectator had been relentlessly abusing and distracting him, but Melzer ultimately behaved in a way that is best for sports heroes to avoid.

In Miami in 2009, a match took place between Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic, in which a normally mild-mannered Federer smashed his racket on the ground, completely destroying it in a fit of anger. He was subsequently booed from his usually adoring fans. It’s not the only incident that Swiss star Federer has been involved in, but luckily this next story paints him in a better light.

On the opening day of the French Open 2015, a fan stormed onto the court causing a security scare that threatened the tournament before it had even begun. Thankfully, the fan wanted little more than to have a photo taken with the tennis legend, and after achieving his aim was swiftly escorted away by security staff. Federer currently has 13/2 odds of winning the French Open this year while Djokovic is the overall favorite.

Perhaps my favorite tennis moment of all time happened in the 1984 Stockholm Finals, when John McEnroe, who earned himself the nickname of “Mr Erratic”, lashed out at the refreshments table at the side of the court. A refreshment flew up from the table and happened to hit the King of Sweden, Carl XVI Gustaf, in the head. Absolutely priceless entertainment!


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