Victoria Azarenka Took a Long Timeout

Written by: on 24th January 2013
Print This Post Print This Post
Tennis Australian Open 2013
Victoria Azarenka Took a Long Timeout

epa03550794 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus hits a forehand during her quarter final match against Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia at the Australian Open Grand Slam tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia, 23 January 2013. EPA/Dennis Sabangan  |

Defending champion Victoria Azarenka trudged off court for a nine minute long medical time out after squandering five match points in her Australian against teenage American Sloane Stephens and walked into massive controversy, admitting she needed time to ‘calm down’.

With the match staged in temperatures nudging towards the 100 degrees Fahrenheit mark, Azarenka eventually won 6-1, 6-4, rounding off her passage to the final and a meeting with former French Open champion Li Na in just one more match.

Azarenka gave varied excuses during her various television interviews, filmed immediately after the match. With Australian host broadcaster Channel 7 she admitted: “It was nearly the choke of the year. Nerves got to me for sure.”

The general assumption that the more experienced of the two players on court was abusing the medical time out really to employ some gamesmanship, appeared to be underlined when Azarenka said to Eurosport TV: “I’m so glad I took that timeout, I really needed it.”

Finally when asked by ESPN why she took the two consecutive timeouts, allowed by Australian umpire Kerrilyn Cramer, the world no.1 from Belarus began to elaborate and said: “I had to take a little bit of time to calm down.

“I couldn’t breathe, I had chest pains. It was like I was having a heart attack or something. I did it to make sure I was OK because I really could not breathe.”

When she arrived in her routine media press conference, more than an hour later, and with agent Meilun Tu and PR advisor Benito Perez Barbadillo sitting close by, Azarenka changed her story and said it was her back that caused her to take the timeout.

“That’s the reason I couldn’t breathe – my back was locked,” she said. “I had to unlock my rib, which was causing my back problem. The trainer said, ‘We have to go off court to treat the problem’. I didn’t really want to take off my dress on the court.”

Of her comments to ESPN, she said she had misunderstood the question. “I completely thought of a different thing, “ she maintained. “Why I couldn’t close out of the match, that I had few difficulties. So I understand the whole situation right now, but it just really simple misunderstanding of a question.” Then she added: “I guess it was my back.”

Azarenka also admitted she should have taken the timeout earlier than when she did but Stephens refused to be drawn into any row. “When you take a medical break or timeout, obviously it’s for a reason,” said the teenager who is now predicted to rise inside the world’s top 20. “Like if it was one of my friends, I would say, ‘Oh, my God, that sounds like a PP, which is a personal problem. Other than that, it’s just unfortunate.”

©Daily Tennis News Wire

Topics: , , , , ,





10sBalls Top Stories

In Case You Missed It

Tennis News •  Upset City • Nitto ATP Finals In London Takes Another Turn As Goffin Stuns Federer thumbnail

Tennis News • Upset City • Nitto ATP Finals In London Takes Another Turn As Goffin Stuns Federer

Going into the semis of the eight-man Nitto ATP Finals, the three bottom seeds remained.
Serbian Tennis Future Is Bright – Meet Mihailo Topic thumbnail

Serbian Tennis Future Is Bright – Meet Mihailo Topic

During the Davis cup quarterfinals tie between Serbia & Spain, I took an opportunity to interview young Mihajlo Topic.
LONDON Tennis Update From The 02  • Grigor Dimitrov Dominates At Nitto 2017 ATP World Tour Championship Finals thumbnail

LONDON Tennis Update From The 02 • Grigor Dimitrov Dominates At Nitto 2017 ATP World Tour Championship Finals

Another backhand bolt from Grigor Dimitrov stung the sideline leaving Pablo Carreno Busta shaking his head smiling at the absurdity of it all
RICKY’S PREVIEW AND PREDICTION FOR THE ATP FINALS AFTERNOON SEMI: FEDERER VS. GOFFIN thumbnail

RICKY’S PREVIEW AND PREDICTION FOR THE ATP FINALS AFTERNOON SEMI: FEDERER VS. GOFFIN

The year-end championship was Roger Federer's personal playground during a nine-year stretch from 2003 to 2011, in which he lifted the winner's trophy on six occasions.
TENNIS NEWS • LONDON • GOFFIN TO FACE FEDERER IN ATP LONDON SEMIFINALS thumbnail

TENNIS NEWS • LONDON • GOFFIN TO FACE FEDERER IN ATP LONDON SEMIFINALS

Extreme experiences marked David Goffin’s World Tour Finals week. The seventh seed soared knocking out world No. 1 Rafael Nadal in what he called the best win of his career on Monday night only to crash and burn suffering his worst loss of the season to Grigor Dimitrov on Wednesday.