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In the middle of the match: tennis star in tears

In the semi-final match between Iga Świątek and Coco Gauff, there is a controversial scene – which leads to an emotional outburst from the American

There were emotional scenes in the women’s semi-final of the French Open on Thursday between Iga Świątek and Coco Gauff. At 2:1 and 0:15 in the second set, a discussion developed between the US-American Gauff and chair umpire Aurélie Tourte.

And suddenly the 20-year-old world number three had tears streaming down her face, she tried to stop them with the sweatband on her wrist, kept wiping her eyes and could hardly be calmed down.

What had happened?

A serve from Świątek was seen to be out of bounds by the lineswoman, but Tourte had given the service well. Gauff’s return landed in the net and the point went to Świątek – wrongly, in Gauff’s opinion. Instead, the point should have been replayed, she said. Some members of the audience also reacted with incomprehension. “They’re booing because you’re wrong,” said Gauff to the referee, who ultimately interpreted the timing of the out call differently to the US player.

Gauff then turned away with tears in her eyes, while the audience gave her uplifting applause. “She’s only human and she’s 20 years young. I felt incredibly sorry for her then, she was really desperate,” said former national coach Barbara Rittner on the broadcasting channel Eurosport.

With anger in her stomach, Gauff then got the break to lead 3:1 – but Świątek hit back ice-cold and won four games in a row. After 1:37 hours, she converted her fourth match point to win 6:2, 6:4. It was her eleventh win against Gauff, and Świątek has not beaten any other player on the tour more times.

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