Tennis Prose



Mouratoglou and Woodbridge In Fierce Feud

By Scoop Malinowski

In case you haven’t heard, tennis has bucked a hisoric tradition: The ATP has legalized coaching for players and this new innovation has sparked a feud between two very prominent figures of the tennis world…

Patrick Mouratolgou: “Congratulations to the ATP for legalizing a practice that has been going on at almost every match for decades. No more hypocrisy.”

Former Grand Slam champion and TV analyst Todd Woodbridge fired back: “This is so disappointing to see that such a high profile coach blatantly admits that he has broken the rules of our sport for so long.”

Patrick: “This is a particularly bad one from you Todd. You have been on tour for a long time. Why do you deny the evidence of the coaching happening every day on the courts ? To purposely trying to make me look bad and accusing me ? This is disappointing… “

Patrick: “And by the way, learn to read. I never wrote that I was doing what you pretend I wrote.”

Todd: “Well I can honestly say my coaches didn’t coach from the stand.”

This grudge confrontation which happened on twitter today may be a partial misunderstanding, or perhaps a personal clash of egos. Coach and academy owner Mouratoglou has long been an advocate to allow coaches to advise players during matches – which helps to raise his visibility and fame – and his coaching hand signals to Serena Williams at the US Open final vs Naomi Osaka were a major element in the drama controversy which played a pivotal role in the outcome of that match.

But lost in all the confusion of that chaotic US Open final was the truth that while Mouratoglou may have been attempting to coach Serena to help her overcome Osaka has that day, Serena always adamantly denied she was taking the coaching signals or even wanted them. The real truth may be that Mouratoglou was posing pretending to coach Serena, for his own vanity, and it backfired big time when the chair umpire noticed and took action against Serena.

That element of the match is what seemed to enrage Serena the most, that she was being penalized by chair umpire Carlos Ramos for something she angrily insisted she was not actually guilty of.

This whole silly episode between Mouratoglou and Woodbridge, in a weird way, sort of aptly symbolizes the overall dysfunction of corruption troubling professional tennis at the moment.

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