Coco Gauff - Roland Garros 2024

Coco Gauff calls for VAR in tennis after Roland Garros Semi-final controversy

Coco Gauff has spoken about about the lack of video review in tennis at the moment, after a controversial decision left the American in tears in her Roland Garros semi-final.

Gauff was beaten by world No.1 Iga Swiatek, 6-2 6-4, to continue her poor record against the Pole (11-1 in favour of Swiatek).

However, one of the main talking points of the match came early in the second set with Swiatek serving at 1-2 0-15.

Swiatek hit a serve that was initially called out, with Gauff returning the ball wide of the tramline, but chair umpire Aurelie Tourte overruled the call and awarded the defending champion the point.

This prompted an emotional and defiant response from Gauff, who was insistent that she was impacted by the line umpires call and told Tourte to ‘know the rules of the game’.

Despite clearly being tearful after the exchange, Gauff used the crowd support to break Swiatek for the first time in the match, but then went onto lose five of the next six games.

Following this decision, Gauff was asked about whether she would want some form of video technology system in the sport in her post-match press conference, “100%, I think tennis is the only sport where not only we don’t have the VR (Video Review) system, but a lot of times the decisions are made by one person. In other sports, there are usually multiple refs (referees) in making a decision.”

Video review was brought in play on some of the bigger courts at the US Open last year, but is yet to become a mainstay at Grand Slams or on either the ATP and WTA Tours.

This is something that Gauff referred to, revealing that she believes tennis ‘has to evolve’, “I know the US Open brought in some of it last year, I believe. I know we used it in our doubles at one point. Yeah, I definitely think at this point it’s almost ridiculous that we don’t have it. Not also just speaking because that happened to me, but I just think every sport has it.”

The 20-year-old continued, “Also, there are so many decisions that are made, and it sucks as a player to go back or online, and you see that you were completely right, and it’s, like, what does that give you in that moment?

“Also, in situations, you can call for the supervisor, but there’s not much they can do from that standpoint. I definitely think as a sport we have to evolve, and we have the technology. They’re showing it on TV, so I don’t get why the player can’t see it.”

While Gauff has not been able to reach another Roland Garros final, she will be rewarded for her efforts on Monday with a new career-high ranking of world No.2.

Inside the baseline…

It is hard to argue with Coco Gauff on this decision, as she was clearly affected by the call and the point should have been replayed. While video review does feel like a necessary addition to tennis at the biggest tournaments, at the US Open last year there were some major teething problems with the system and it should only brought in if it is going to be effective and not bring matches to a complete halt.

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.