Tennis Great Chris Evert Says Player Mental Health Must Be Addressed After Series Of Incidents - UBITENNIS
Connect with us

Latest news

Tennis Great Chris Evert Says Player Mental Health Must Be Addressed After Series Of Incidents

Evert, who won a outstanding 154 singles titles during her career, says she is ‘worried’ by recent events.

Avatar

Published

on

Chris Evert at Wimbledon 2017 (photo Art Seitz)

18-time Grand Slam champion Chris Evert says recent incidents of players losing their cool on the court has elevated her concerns about their welfare in the sport.

 

The former world No.1 called for more action to be taken by tennis’ governing bodies after claiming officials are receiving more abuse than any other sport. This season has already been marred by various incidents with the most notable of them involving Germany’s Alexander Zverev. Zverev was disqualified from the Mexican Open after repeatedly swearing and hitting the umpire’s chair with his racket, narrowly missing his foot. He was later fined and placed on a year-long probation period.

Last month Nick Kyrgios was docked a total of $60,000 for violating the rules at tournaments in Indian Wells and Miami. The offences he committed included unsportsmanlike conduct, swearing, verbal abuse and nearly hitting a ball boy after smashing his racket on the ground following his loss to Rafael Nadal. Another player, Jenson Brooksby, was also fined $15,000 after throwing his racket which almost hit a boy.

On the women’s Tour the most notable incident involved Victoria Azarenka in Miami where the two-time Australian Open champion abruptly retired from her match against Linda Fruhvirtova whilst down 2-6, 0-3. She later issued a statement saying she ‘shouldn’t have gone on the court’ due to recent issues in her personal life.

Speaking about the series of incidents on the Tour during an interview with Eurosport, 67-year-old Evert says one of the explanations could be linked to the toll the sport is taking on the players mentally. She says there should be more discussions surrounding mental health.

“I don’t know any other sport where the athlete abuses the official as much as tennis,” said Everet. “I worry about the behaviour of players and I even worry about breaking down emotionally on the court and walking off in the middle of a match and I worry about the emotional and mental relapses or breakdowns that these players are having.
“I worry about the players. I’m not making any judgments on the players, but it’s an area of concern: why are players losing control and breaking racquets and putting others in harm’s way?
“Why are they breaking down on the court emotionally? It’s something that needs to be addressed. It’s something that needs to be talked about. Tennis is a sport and it’s not life. I mean even since I’ve had some health issues, I realize it’s a sport. It should be viewed with a different perspective.”

Earlier this week it was confirmed that the ATP intends to crack down on player misbehaviour by ordering officials to take a ‘stricter stance’ when it comes to enforcing penalties on those who break the rules. Andrea Gaudenzi, who is CEO of the ATP, has also ordered a review into the code of conduct. Although there was no mention of addressing anything related to player mental health.

Evert has welcomed a growing trend in players on the WTA Tour collaborating with sports psychologists. One of the most notable being that of world No.1 Iga Swiatek who says a big part of her development has been linked to her work with Psychologist Daria Abramowicz. Another example is Naomi Osaka who recently revealed that she is seeing a therapist. The former world No.1 confirmed in 2021 that she suffers from depression and social anxiety.

“I noticed that now a lot of the women tennis players have sports psychologists. And have therapists and that’s a growing occurrence and I think it’s great because they’re addressing their issues and it’s not easy. It’s not easy living the life of a top player,” she said.
“There are a lot of pressures that people have no idea that you face. Your identity starts to melt in with winning or losing. You’re either a winner that day or you’re a loser that day to the whole world.
“And that has consequences on you emotionally and mentally. We as players and former players understand that better than the public understands that.
“So there’s something emotional going on in the tennis world that needs to be addressed.”

In recent years, both the ATP and WTA Tour’s have set up programmes designed to support players’ mental health.

Latest news

Novak Djokovic reaches the semifinal in Tel Aviv

Avatar

Published

on

Novak Djokovic beat Canadian lucky loser Vasek Pospisil 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 to reach the semifinal at the Tel Aviv Watergen Open. 

 

Djokovic has improved his record to 6-0 in his head-to-head matches against Pospisil. He has won all 13 sets they have played. 

Both players went on serve en route to the tie-break. Djokovic earned two mini-breaks to race out to a 4-0 lead. Pospisil won five of the next six points to draw level to 5-5. Djokovic won the next two points to seal the tie-break 7-5. 

Djokovic went up a break at the start of the second set. Pospisil broke back in the fifth game to reduce the deficit to 2-3. Djokovic broke again in the eighth game before serving out for the match in the next game. 

Djokovic set up a semifinal against Roman Safiulin. The Serbian player is aiming to win his third title this season after his previous triumphs in Rome and Wimbledon. He is currently ranked 15th in the ATP Race to Turin. As he won a Grand Slam title at Wimbeldon this year, he will qualify for the ATP Finals if he remains in the top 20. 

“It was a great and positive win. Vasek is one of my best friends on the tour. We have known each other for many years. It is never easy playing someone you respect so much and like so much, but we are both professionals and wanted to win the match and you can see that. ”, said Djokovic. 

Constant Lestienne came back from one set down to beat Maxime Cressy 6-7 (4-7) 6-3 7-6 (7-3) setting up a semifinal against Marin Cilic, who reached his fifth semifinal this year after receiving a walkover from Liam Broady.   

Continue Reading

Latest news

Jannik Sinner reaches his third consecutive semifinal at the Sofia Open

Avatar

Published

on

Jannik Sinner cruised past Aleksandar Vukic 6-2 6-3 to advance to his third consecutive semifinal at the Sofia Open. Sinner scored his 45th tour.level win this season moving up to 12th in the ATP Race to Turin. He will rise to 10th if he wins his third consecutive title in Sofia. 

 

Sinner has extended his winning streak to 11-0 at the Sofia Open. He claimed the trophy at this tournament at the Sofia Open in 2020 before he successfully defended his title last year.  

Sinner faced four break points after three double faults in the first game of opening set. Vukic saved a break point with a forehand at 1-2. Sinner broke twice in the sixth and eighth games to win the first set 6-2. 

Sinner built up a 3-0 lead with a break at the start of the second set. Vukic broke back in the seventh game for 3-4. Sinner earned his second break in the eighth game. Sinner missed out on his first match point with his fifth double fault. Vukic fended off a second match point with a forehand passing shot. Sinner saved a break point with an ace before sealing the win on his third match point. 

“I hope to raise my level in the next match. I am happy to reach the third semifinal at this tournament. I feel at home in Sofia. I will try to play my best tennis in every match”, said Sinner, 

Sinner will face a semifinal match against Holger Rune, who will face Ilya Ivashka 6-2 5-7 6-4 after 2 hours and 22 minutes. 

Rune broke in the fifth and seventh games to win the first set 6-2. Ivashka saved four break points in th third game before breaking for the first time in the match in the 12th game to close out the second set 7-5. 

Rune earned a break in the third game to take a 2-1 lead. Ivashka broke back in the sixth game to draw level to 3-3. Rune broke for the second game in the ninth game and held serve on his second match point. 

Lorenzo Musetti moved past world number 132 player Jan-Lennard Struff 7-6 (7-3) 6-1 after 1 hour and 16 minutes to reach his second ATP Tour semifinal of the season. 

Struff earned an early break in the second game to open up a 3-0 lead. Musetti came back from 15-40 down to break back in the fifth game with a backhand passing shot winner. Musetti went down 0-2 in the tie-break, but he rallied by winning seven of the next eight points to seal the tie-break 7-3. Musetti broke twice in the second and fourth games and sealed the win on his first match point with a forehand winner after 77 minutes. Musetti set up a semifinal match against Marc Andrea Huesler, who saved two match points in the tie-break of the second set to beat Kamil Majchrzak 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (8-6) 6-3. 

Continue Reading

Latest news

Casper Ruud and Stefanos Tsitsipas qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin

Avatar

Published

on

Casper Ruud and Stefanos Tsitsipas have qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals singles tournament in Turin, Joining Australian Open champion Rafael Nadal and US Open winner Carlos Alcaraz. 

 

Ruud secured his spot in the year-end championships by winning his second-round match in Seoul. 

Ruud reached his first ATP Masters 1000 final in Miami and two Grand Slam finals at Roland Garros and at the US Open. He also won three ATP Tour titles in Buenos Aires, Geneva and Gstaad. The Norwegian player has scored 47 ATP Tour-level wins and is ranked third behind only Alcaraz (52) and Tsistipas (49). 

Ruud made his first appearance at the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin last year. He won his round robin matches against against Cameron Norrie and Andrey Rublev before losing to Danil Medvedev in the semifinal. 

“I just got the news that I qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin and I am looking forward to coming back to Italy. I had such a great time last year. It’s a great country for tennis”, said Ruud. 

Tsitsipas has become the fourth player to qualify to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals. The Greek player will make his fourth consecutive appearance at the year-end tournament. He won the title in 2019 beating Novak Djokovic in the final. Tsitsipas started the 2022 season with a semifinal at the Australian Open last January. He advanced to the final in Rotterdam where he finished runner-up to Felix Auger Aliassime.

The 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals champion won his second consecutive title at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. Last May Tsitsipas finished runner-up to Novak Djokovic in the final of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. During the US hard-court season the Athens native player lost to Borna Coric in the final of the Cincinnati Masters 1000 tournament. 

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending