‘You are the worst player’: Jelena Ostapenko RAGES to Ajla Tomljanovic after losing at Wimbledon
A bitter row erupted in court on Saturday 15 when Ajla Tomljanovic accused Jelena Ostapenko of faking an injury, lying and “shameful behavior”.
Tomljanovic, who will face Britain’s Emma Raducanu in the fourth round, had won six trotting matches to take a 4-0 lead in the deciding game when her opponent told the referee she was injured and needed a medical time out.
As the Aussie was about to serve, Ostapenko sat down in his chair and said: “I can’t continue. I’m in pain. ‘
Jelena Ostapenko (R) and Ajla Tomljanovic (L) were involved in a heated clash after their match
Grand Slam rules state that a player must wait for the next change to receive medical treatment, unless he suffers from an â€œacute injuryâ€. The referee called the physiotherapist, to Tomljanovic’s fury: ‘You know she’s lying, don’t you? We all know. Do you take into account that she looked fine for an hour and a half and now there is a serious injury? “
The Latvian was assessed by the physiotherapist and left the court for treatment. She eventually came back and Tomljanovic won 4-6, 6-4, 6-2.
After a late handshake, the war of words became personal. Ostapenko: â€œIf you think I’m faking it, you can talk to the physiotherapist. Your behavior is horrible. You have no respect. Tomljanovic: â€œYou are speaking. Â»Ostapenko:Â« What? You are the worst player on tour. ‘
The row continued in press conferences as both players doubled down. First, Ostapenko and the defense file.
Ostapenko (above) requested a time-out when Tomljanovic was 4-0 in the last set, which angered his opponent
â€œFirst of all, she can’t say anything because she doesn’t know anything about my injury,â€ said the 24-year-old, who won the 2017 French Open. â€œAnd secondly, it was very disrespectful of His part.
â€œI had a problem with my abs in the second set. I should have called a physio sooner, but I was just trying to forget about the pain and focus on the game.
And then her tee shot: “I think my level today was not good after the first set, because if I had played at least 50%, I would have beaten her.”
Now the case for the prosecution. “I’ve been in situations where players use this medical time out to push their opponent back, usually when they lose badly,” said Tomljanovic.
â€œShe can tell she was hurt. I don’t think she was. There was nothing wrong with her the whole game, but then why on 4-0 is she calling him? She just wanted to get me out of my game. Usually if you’re dealing with an injury you say, â€œHey, can you call the physio on the next change? You’re not just going to sit down when your opponent is about to serve to go up 5-0.
Tomljanovic thought Ostapenko was faking the injury in order to break his rhythm
â€œThere was nothing wrong with it. I know when someone is hurt and when they are not.
â€œThen, to top it off, for her to call me disrespectful at the end of the game – it’s laughable.
“I think that’s shameful behavior from a Slam champion, because the kids are looking at her and, what, they see that?”
Medical time-out is a thorny issue in tennis – it is sometimes abused for tactical reasons.
But that’s not an easy problem to resolve, with tournaments terrified of the legal ramifications if they are seen to deny players medical treatment.
When Tomljanovic sealed the victory, Ostapenko said that his “opponent’s behavior was terrible”
The Australian hit back at Ostapenko saying the Latvian “was the type to talk”
“There should definitely be a rule to prevent this from happening, because it happens far too much in women’s football,” said Tomljanovic.
â€œBut I guess you can’t deny a player medical help. The point is, you can always lie, but that’s where sportsmanship comes in. Regardless of the rule, we are elite athletes and I expect more.
â€œThe fact that she did it at 4-0 when I was about to serve is disrespectful. It’s not what you do, especially at Wimbledon. It is the pinnacle of sport. I’m just sick of it happening. We can do better than that.
Tomljanovic will now face 18-year-old British player Emma Raducanu (above) on Monday