Sporting Life

Respect elevates sport, bullies like Zverev bruise it

German Alexander Zverev hits the umpire's chair with his racket after the end of his Mexico ATP Open 500 doubles tennis match, on Feb 23, 2022. PHOTO: AFP
New: Gift this subscriber-only story to your friends and family

After the tantrum in Mexico, the irony. After he's hammered his racket four times against the umpire's chair and behaved like an entitled punk, Alexander Zverev provides the coup de grace to a moment rich with disrespect. He hands his mangled racket to a young boy to whom he is supposed to be an example. A memento to stupidity.

You want to sit in the umpire's chair, you better wear a thick skin because stuff is going to come your way. Spit from Andre Agassi. A shake of your chair from Jim Courier. A slap from Jeff Tarango's wife. A greeting from Jimmy Connors in 1991, which went like this: "You're a bum. I'm out here playing my butt off at 39 years old and you're doing that?"

Already a subscriber? 

Read the full story and more at $9.90/month

Get exclusive reports and insights with more than 500 subscriber-only articles every month

Unlock these benefits

  • All subscriber-only content on ST app and

  • Easy access any time via ST app on 1 mobile device

  • E-paper with 2-week archive so you won't miss out on content that matters to you

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.