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Italian Open: Tennis Fans Label Iga Swiatek’s Opponent a ‘Disgrace’ for Her Unwarranted Mockery of the Polish Star


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Iga Swiatek destroying her opponent is nothing new in the tennis world! But the number 41 mocking the world number 1 tennis star is pretty unusual. Even someone as animated as Ben Shelton wouldn’t dare to do it. Well, this happened in the R32 clash between Iga Swiatek and Yulia Putintseva. The Polish tennis star comfortably defeated the Kazakhstani by 6-3,6-4 in the R3 match of the 2024 Italian Open. But it was Putintseva’s action during the second set which has brought her under the fire of Iga Swiatek fans.

She purposefully mocked Iga Swiatek’s breathing control techniques in the middle of that game. And, immediately after a few moments, she was accused blatantly of showcasing poor sportsmanship. In 1 hour 46 minutes, that moment featuring a mere 5 seconds of imitation has now stirred up a new controversy. Fans have now come out in numbers to take a jibe at Yulia Putintseva. One of the fans didn’t look too impressed with that unusual facial expression. The fan tweeted, “She is clearly constipated.


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While some of them feel she is nothing but an utter disgrace to the entire sport. However, this isn’t the first time she has been standing in the middle of firing lines. Even during the 2019 AO, she was tagged as an “absolute disgrace” for her inappropriate gesture towards the spectators after she crashed out of the AO. “She’s a disgrace to the sport,” wrote a fan this time around as well.

A few of them felt something was really wrong with Yulia Putintseva. They wondered how one could showcase such a strange facial expression during a live match. That too against the world number one. “Something wrong with her head,” claimed a fan. 

If we look at their head-to-head, Iga Swiatek has been completely dominant in their previous meetings. It has been truly flightless over the year! And talking about this incident a fan called this act truly “classless“. The fan tweeted, “Another display of how utterly classless ths woman is. Disgrace thy name is Putinseva.

Perhaps she tried to break the concentration and focus of Iga Swiatek by doing such stuff. But is it the right way to counter someone as competitive as Iga Swiatek? “She knows she can only win against Iga only if Iga stops breathing,” said the other.

Despite all these, Iga Swiatek didn’t forget to heap praise on her “tricky” opponent. She said, “Well, I think she’s a tough opponent because she’s changing the rhythm a lot. She’s also, as you could see today, playing differently.” Swiatek went on to reflect on how her opponent mixed up things in the middle of the match to make things difficult for her. But this isn’t the only mockery that happened in Rome this year!

“I got a little bit distracted” – Iga Swiatek

After the match, Iga Swiatek was asked how she managed to turn the match back in her favor so quickly. To this, she replied, “I think it was all about my energy and my state at the time. I got a little bit distracted.” But after that, she tried to repeat the way she played in her first set and then eventually sealed the deal of the match. Perhaps, she didn’t pay any heed to Putintseva’s antics.


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But the crowd did pay heed after seeing Ben Shelton imitating Pavel Kotov’s celebration after their second-round clash at the 2024 Italian Open. Shortly after his emphatic victory over the Russian, the American tennis star was spotted imitating Kotov’s fist-pump celebration pointing directly towards his team. However, after that, he went to shake his hands with his opponent. 

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Italian Open always comes up with a lot more than just tennis and there is a still long way to go before the final day. 

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