What happens if a live event doesn’t have a contingency plan in place in lieu of uncooperative technology?

On Friday afternoon in Indian Wells, BNP Paribas Open organizers found out the hard way in needing to delay the women’s semifinals.

An audio issue became apparent when emcee Andrew Krasny was unable to announce Aryna Sabalenka’s entrance to the court after having no problems introducing Maria Sakkari. Soon, it became clear it was a wider technical issue, with the Hawkeye Live line calling system and chair umpire's microphone out of commission.


As the setback was investigated, both players were consulted by a WTA supervisor. So why not adapt to traditional line calling if the issue couldn't be resolved quickly?

The 1000-level tournament is one of the rare events on either tour that has implemented electronic line calling on every court. As Brett Haber pointed out on Tennis Channel, many chair umpires who would have been qualified to call lines had already left the venue with the tournament winding down to its final three days of competition.

“They don’t have anyone who can fix it. They have no idea what the problem is,” Sabalenka could be heard saying to her box. “They’re just trying to reboot the system.”

A little more than 30 minutes passed before sound returned inside the venue. The crowed cheered when Sabalenka and Sakkari finally took their warm up.

The Australian Open champion fittingly opened the clash with an ace out wide.