‘It needs to stop!’ – Casper Ruud calls for end to ‘reckless behaviour’ amid rise in unsporting conduct
Casper Ruud believes the recent rise in racket abuse and unsportsmanlike conduct “brings negative attention” to the sport and tarnishes the “majority of players” who behave professionally.
Over the past four months, tennis has seen multiple controversial instances involving racket abuse and unsporting behaviour by a number of professionals.
At the Australian Open, US Open victor and World number two Daniil Medvedev launched an irate tirade against the chair umpire.
Then World number five Alexander Zverev was expelled from the Mexican Open after he swung his racket at the chair umpire’s stand four times.
The German was fined and docked all points and prize money earned at the event and was also placed under an eight-week suspended ban.
There were also a number of incidents during the ‘Sunshine Double’ when both Australian icon Nick Kyrgios and American youngster Jenson Brooksby threw their rackets in anger, almost striking ball boys.
As a result of these incidents and pressure from 21-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal, seven-time major titlist Mats Wilander and US Open ace Tracey Austin, the ATP launched an internal review into their code of conduct.
Now, in an interview with the Ruud Talk Vodcast alongside Mats Wilander and Barbara Schett, Norwegian World number seven Casper Ruud said “I think it needs to stop.
“This has been two [or] three cases now in within a month. So it’s reckless behaviour in a way.
“It’s not something I wish to see, but at the same time, it brings attention to the sport just in a negative way.
“I think the punishment is tough to say what is fair and what is not that they do get big fines, but for some of these players [it] doesn’t seem like it matters. So it’s tough to say what we can do about it.
“I mean, majority of players, they don’t do these things, but the way it’s looking, it can look like a big, big accident or incident can occur at any time.
“So let’s see, I mean, I think they have been getting some fines and some meetings probably with the board and the guys in the ATP who are deciding in the end.”
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