Novak Djokovic Booted From US Open After Hitting Line Judge With A Ball
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Novak Djokovic has been disqualified from the US Open after hitting a line judge in the throat with a ball.
The world number one was undefeated in 2020 to this point, but it looks like that streak has some to a devastating end after an ugly incident at Flushing Meadows.
And while Djokovic was clearly incensed by his barring, the tennis world was divided in opinion too - some claiming the Serbian had hit the ball out of anger and others saying it was a freak accident.
Either way, intentional or not, Djokovic ultimately defaulted the match and was booted from the competition.
"there's no way Novak Djokovic can possibly look any worse this year"
- Eoin Sheahan (@EoinSheahan) September 6, 2020
The competition's top seed had just lost a game to Pablo Carreno Busta to fall behind 6-5 in the opening set of their fourth-round clash.
Clearly frustrated with his own performance, Djokovic's shoulders looked slumped and his head was bowed as he walked towards the baseline.
But instead of gently returning the tennis balls to the ball boys and girls ahead of his serve, Djokovic rocketed one in the direction of a line judge which hit her square in the throat.
Hit with such power, the shot rocked the line judge as she dropped to her knees.
Seeing that she was clearly hurt, Djokovic stuck up his hand to apologise before walking over to check on her.
Djokovic disqualified from the #USopen for doing this in his usual fits of anger. Imagine being so stupid to do this in a GS which had no Nadal nor Federer. pic.twitter.com/6cTH2OiXxH
- M•A•J (@Ultra_Suristic) September 6, 2020
With medics attending to the wounded judge, Djokovic was seen muttering: "I'm sorry."
But it wasn't long before tournament referee Soeren Friemel entered the picture to talk to both players.
Djokovic pleaded his case with match umpires and the referee but his appeals fell on deaf ears.
"She doesn't have to go to the hospital for this," he said.
"You're going to choose a default in this situation? My career, grand slam, centre stage?
"If she would have gotten up right away..."
The Chair umpire then announced that he had been default and the match was subsequently called off.
Fans watching from across the globe were quick to criticise the controversial star, while others later came out in support of him.
For Djokovic on a personal level, though, the incident ends his stellar unbeaten run in 2020.
Featured Image Credit: PA
Topics: Referees, Novak Djokovic, US Open, Australia