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Gauff wants video replays in tennis after argument with chair umpire

Dan Istitene / Getty Images Sport / Getty

PARIS (AP) — Coco Gauff was not thrilled about the chair umpire's ruling that went against her during a French Open semifinal loss to Iga Swiatek on Thursday — and made that quite clear to the official.

Gauff also thinks it's about time that tennis moved into the 21st century and relied on video replay technology at all events, the way many other sports do.

“At this point, it’s almost ridiculous that we don’t have it," she said. “There are so many decisions that are made, and it sucks as a player to go back or (watch) online, and you see that you were completely right. And it’s, like: What does that give you in that moment?”

The 20-year-old American, who won the U.S. Open in September for her first Grand Slam title, disagreed with chair umpire Aurélie Tourte's decision early in the second set of Swiatek's 6-2, 6-4 victory. Swiatek hit a serve that initially was called out at around the same time as Gauff was swinging to hit a return, which landed out. The call on the serve itself was reversed to “In,” and Tourte awarded the point to Swiatek; Gauff said that was unfair because she thought she was affected by the original “Out” call.

“I have the right to finish my swing," Gauff said.

Tourte's reply? “It did not affect the shot,” she said.

Gauff then told Tourte she was wrong and “should be ashamed.”

“It’s a Grand Slam semifinal,” Gauff told the official. "Know the rules of the game.”

Tourte did not budge.

When action resumed, Gauff walked back behind the baseline and used her wrist bands to wipe at her eyes.

“Every point matters against anybody, but especially against her. I think it was just one of those moments, but I overcame it. I obviously won that game,” Gauff said. “I usually don’t get too frustrated with decisions like that, but I think it was just a combination of everything going on in the moment.”

Gauff did break Swiatek for the only time in the match right then for a 3-1 lead in the set. But Swiatek would take five of the next six games to reach another final at Roland Garros, where she is seeking a third consecutive trophy and fourth in five years.

As for the larger issue of whether Tourte should have been able to examine some sort of replay to figure out whether the line judge's shout did affect things, Gauff had zero doubt about her stance.

“I think tennis is the only sport where not only we don’t have the (video replay) system ... (and) in other sports, there’s usually multiple refs making a decision,” Gauff said, noting that the U.S. Open did add replays for certain calls last year. “I definitely think, as a sport, we have to evolve. And have the technology. They’re showing it on TV, so I don’t get why the player can’t see it.”

Swiatek agreed with the basic premise, saying, “It would be easier to have the replay,” but added: “I don’t know how it would look, like, logistically. When can you ask an umpire to (show) a video replay or (whether) it’s up to her to do that. Because I think the umpire today was pretty sure with her call.”


AP Sports Writer Jerome Pugmire contributed to this report.


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