Roger Federer not amused with on-court selfie




A young Roger Federer fan at the Roland Garros made his way through the security and barriers to hop on to the clay court and take a selfie with his tennis star. This incident took place as Federer was ready to leave court after beating Alejandro Falla in straight sets – 6-3, 6-3, 6-4. The young lad was later escorted away from the court by security personnel.

Roger Federer not amused with on-court selfie

Roger Federer not amused with on-court selfie

Roger Federer who is a traditionalist, has always struggled to adapt to the new world of selfie. Federer did not seem amused by his fan who pulled off this stunt to take a picture with him. This in fact has been added to the list of security breached at the French Open through the years.

“Obviously, not one second I’m happy about it”, he said. “Normally I only speak on my behalf, but in this situation, I think I can speak on behalf of all the players that that’s where you do your job. That’s where you want to feel safe and clearly I’m not happy about it. But nothing happened. So I’m relieved but clearly it wasn’t a nice situation to be in”, said Roger asking for the security measures to be beefed up.

Gilbert Ysern, the French Open tournament director, apologized to Federer in the locker room after the match and has stated the incident as a lack of judgement. “What happened today does not so that the risk level is high”, he said, “We’re talking about an error in judgement. The guards are well prepared. If a guy went running on the court with an aggressive attitude, he would not have made it to the player”.

It is an embarrassing incident of course for Ysern and the French Open organisers. The 14-year old young lad who dared this feat has been banned from the rest of the matches. “The court is sacred” said Ysern emphasizing upon the significance of the courts “It is forbidden at any moment for any reason in any possible context to put so much as a toe on the court. All the spectators should know it”.

One of the most horrific accidents on the court involved Monica Seles, the then world number one women player and reigning French Open champion was stabbed in the back on court in 1993. The incident happened in Hambug, Germany, by an agitated German fan of Sele’s arch rival, Steffi Graf.

In a rather recent event at the 2009 French Open while playing a match with Robin Soderling, Roger Federer was forced on a hat by one of the spectators who ran onto the court. Roger was rattled with but did not look as irritated with the incident as the one on this Sunday.

Four years later in 2013, a protester jumped on the court carrying a flare during the men’s final match between Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer.

Roger Federer might be seen as over reacting to the situation but he has been attending a lot of charity shows worldwide where he interacts with kids and young fans. But an on-court breach in security perhaps is what upset the tennis legend. Roger knows Seles personally and perhaps the horror of her attack on court has left him feeling uneasy with intruders on the court.

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Anjan K Merkap

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