French Open Thoughts Part 3

Published: June 11, 2014

The French Open is one of the biggest sporting events in the world with world ranking points & millions of pounds in prize money up for grabs. Considering these high stakes, the level of sportsmanship on display was remarkable.

Tennis players at the top level show respect for the rules of the game & their opponents. They are superb sporting role models in stark contrast to footballers who will seemingly use any means, fair or foul, to gain an advantage.

At Roland Garros I watched well over a dozen matches & the players’ attitude & behaviour was exemplary & yes I did watch Earnest Gulbis who has been known to ‘write off” the odd racket when his frustration takes over.

During the Pablo Cuevas v Fernando Verdasco second round match I witnessed some honesty that is rarely seen in other sports. At 5-5 in the second set a Cuevas ball was called out & Verdasco informed the umpire that the ball was good & the point was replayed. Verdasco won the replayed point.

In the third set, Cuevas returned the favour, the point was replayed & Cuevas won the replayed point. This was a very close five set match & these points were of enormous significance, yet the players’ sense of fair play transcended their desire to win.

Having watched a lot of tennis over the years, I’m happy to report that this phenomenon is not uncommon at all levels of the game (except for Mini Tennis where the U10s can have a rather skewed view of what constitutes in & out!)

I’m proud to be associated with a sport that, even at the highest levels, has fair play & integrity at its heart. Football eat your heart out.