VIDEO: Crowd imitate Aryna Sabalenka’s grunts, leave opponent Ashleigh Barty disappointed

by Ajit Singh Khanna | Posted on Tuesday, January 16th, 2018 | 0

Grunting is highly criticized in tennis – even the likes of Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka, among the others, are not spared.

So, when Aryna Sabalenka was at her grunting best during her first-round match against Australia’s Ashleigh Barty, the crowd were not too pleased.

It happened during the second set of the match when Sabalenka’s service game was disturbed by a section of spectators who attempted to imitate the Belarusian’s grunt.

Consequently, the play was stopped for a while, forcing the chair umpire to interrupt. Barty, too, wore a disappointing look.

The play soon resumed with Barty made to dig deep for a 6-7 6-4 6-4 win over Sabalenka.

Twitterati had mixed reactions concerning the incident.

“She shouldn’t change for people. These hooligans are pathetic,” one user wrote, while the other labelled the crowd “disrespectful.”

However, there were many who called for rules to be introduced against grunting.

“The noise coming from Sabalenka is ridiculous. The @WTA need to do something about it. Hope Barty and the crowd drown it out,” one tweet read.

Another read: “Cannot believe a player is allowed to make such a God awful noise when playing as Sabalenka does. Should be a rule against this blight on the game. Unbearable.”


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