French fans reduce Garbiñe Muguruza to tears

Garbiñe Muguruza
05 Jun, 2017 by Mike Lynch

French favourite Kristina Mladenovic upset former champion Garbiñe Muguruza in ugly circumstances at Roland Garros yesterday.

Garbiñe Muguruza in tears

Muguruza was subjected to heckling, booing, and reportedly even racism during the loss.

 

It’s been reported that one heckler yelled out to Muguruza to “f@#$ off to Venezuela” during the three set encounter.

Muguruza shook her head in disgust as she left the court.

 

Tough Crowd

Muguruza broke down in tears during the press conference when opening up about the taunts.

Garbiñe Muguruza

“The crowd today was a little bit tough for me,” said Muguruza.

“I understand [but] I just think that they should be a little bit more respectful. We had to stop. The chair umpire has to always calm the crowd down. I’m not here to create enemies. I mean, I love playing here. It’s not a good feeling.”

Muguruza’s coach Sam Sumyk (who happens to be French) described the crowd’s actions as pathetic.

To be fair Australia has plenty of bogan tennis fans in the stands at the Australian Open. But I can’t remember an Aussie getting far enough into the tournament to warrant the crowd getting this nasty.

Winners are grinners

Unsurprisingly French favourite Mladenovic thanked the crowd and added that she didn’t think they were out of line.

 

“I don’t think that they crossed the line,” she said.

“I experienced something in Germany where it was way more fired up, but I didn’t criticise the crowd being unfair or anything, because it’s also normal to see the crowd picking out their favourite.”

It’s been a long time between drinks for French women’s tennis at Roland Garros. France has not had a women’s champion since Mary Pierce took out the title in 2000. So the fans have good reasons to be getting excited about Mladenovic’s efforts. One hopes though that officials at the French Open take racism seriously and evict ban any fans found to be guilty of racism. Maybe bring back the guillotine?

Be sure to check out out Open Talks for our in depth chat on sledging and racism in sport.

by Michael T. Lynch – contributor

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