WATCH: Doubles team defaulted at Roland Garros

An otherwise routine doubles match at Roland Garros quickly became anything but on Sunday as the No. 16 seeds, Japan's Miyu Kato and Indonesia's Aldila Sutjiadi, were defaulted from their third-round match against Spain's Sara Sorribes Tormo and the Czech Republic's Marie Bouzkova.

The seeded pair of doubles specialists lost the opening set in a tiebreak and were leading 3-1 in the second when Kato lofted a ball towards the back of the court at the conclusion of a point that inadvertently hit a ball girl. Though the contact was unintentional, the ball girl was left shaken up and crying, which prompted chair umpire Alexandre Juge to issue a code violation, and summon Grand Slam supervisor Wayne McKewen to the court.

Later, tournament referee Remy Azémar arrived, and after a lengthy discussion between the three officials and the players, as well as between the officials and the ball girl, Kato and Sutjiadi were defaulted—tennis' term for an immediate disqualification.

The moment quickly went viral on social media, with many analyzing the video and questioning whether Bouzkova and Sorribes Tormo had pushed for a default as opposed to the initial warning.


Arriving for her standard press conference with members of the Czech media, Bouzkova was met with a crush of English and Japanese-speaking reporters interested in clarity on how the match ended.

"Obviously, it's very unfortunate overall," Bouzkova said. "Sara and I, we've never been in this kind of situation, so we were kind of shaken up by this as well. It's just a tough situation for everyone. But it's something that, I guess, has to be taken by the rules as it is, even though it's very unfortunate for them."

Bouzkova had never before been part of a match to include an incident like this, and noted being concerned by the sound of the ball hitting the ball girl, who continued crying "for another 15 minutes."

"At the end of the day, it was the referee's decision. He got the way we saw it, the way the [chair umpire] saw it, and the supervisor got information from that. They obviously, also, talked to our opponents and what they think happened, and it was in his hands."


Kato and Sutjiadi's default is not the most high-profile such incident at a Grand Slam in recent years; in 2020, world No. 1 Novak Djokovic was defaulted from his fourth-round match against Pablo Carreño Busta at the US Open for striking a line umpire, again inadvertently, with a ball hit in anger at the conclusion of a point. Djokovic hadn't previously lost a match that season prior to the incident.

"I would just say it was unfortunate," Bouzkova added. "If she would've done this gesture and it would've gone this much away from the girl, nothing would've happened and we wouldn't be having this conversation."

Bouzkova and Sorribes Tormo moved through to the quarterfinals as a result of the default, and Sorribes Tormo will be back on court on Monday to play No. 14 seed Beatriz Haddad Maia in the fourth round in singles. The Spaniard has had an eventful 24 hours in Paris: She moved through to the fourth round as a result of receiving a walkover from No. 4 seed Elena Rybakina, as the Kazakh withdrew from the tournament due to an illness.