Video: Jerzy Janowicz's Outburst at Chair Umpire

by: Jonathan Scott January 15, 2013

Up 9-8 in an incredibly intense first-set tiebreaker on Day 3 of the Australian Open, No. 24 seed Jerzy Janowicz came unglued against Somdev Devvarman. In fairness, Devvarman (injured in 2012 and playing courtesy of a protected ranking in this major event) had an earlier dispute with the chair umpire. Janowicz, though, lost his composure entirely, kneeling down and touching the line that the ball did or did not graze, barking at the official and generally embarrassing himself. The outer court did not have Hawk-Eye technology available, but you can relive the incident here:

Devvarman went on to win the tie-breaker by a 12-10 count, and Janowicz hit the umpire's chair at its conclusion, still far less than thrilled with her call—or, rather, her lack of one. "How many times?!" Janowicz screamed at her, and I quite honestly lost track of just how many times he yelled that query.

It was just ugly, no matter what the situation, and his display of emotion made deserving cries (Nancy Kerrigan's "Why?" sprang to mind) sound sedated. It even garnered heightened play more than once in an hour's time on ESPN's SportsCenter, labeled "tennis tirade." In the end, the big-hitting, shout-y Pole took the second-round match, 7-5 in the final set, with a bellow as he emerged victorious.

I must agree with Tennis Channel commentator Justin Gimelstob on this one: A top player, or one who aspires to become a top-flight player, simply doesn't operate like that. Jerzy's got growing up to do. If, as Virginia Wade said, Andy Murray has historically been a "drama queen," he has willingly surrendered the title since the last Grand Slam event to this one.

—Jonathan Scott (@jonscott9)


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