Having misplaced the opening set to Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo and Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic, Japan’s Kato and Sutjiadi of Indonesia have been main 3-1 within the second set of their third spherical match when the incident occurred.
Eurosport coverage confirmed Kato innocuously hitting the ball to the again of the court docket after some extent, and although it didn’t seem as if she deliberately meant to hit the ball girl, the ball hit her head. Standing in the back of the court docket, the tearful ball girl was visibly shaken.
Chair umpire Alexandre Juge issued a code violation earlier than grand slam supervisor Wayne McKewen and event referee Remy Azemar appeared on Court 14. After discussions between the officers and the gamers, it was introduced Kato and Sutjiadi had been defaulted.
The Roland Garros crowd greeted the information with jeers and boos, whereas Sutjiadi comforted Kato.
Tennis journalist Ben Rothenberg tweeted: “Brutal call. Ball not hit in anger whatsoever, just hit across to ball girl to keep the match flowing because it was the other team’s turn to serve. Ball girl had hands full, reacted late.”
It isn’t the primary time a participant has been defaulted at a grand slam. One of essentially the most high-profile incidents occurred in 2020 when Novak Djokovic’s US Open ended early after he was defaulted for unintentionally hitting a line choose.
According to the grand slam rule e-book, gamers “shall not violently, dangerously or with anger hit, kick or throw a tennis ball within the precincts of the tournament site except in the reasonable pursuit of a point during a match (including warm-up)”
The rule e-book states: “In all cases of default, the decision of the referee in consultation with the grand slam chief of supervisors shall be final and unappealable.”
A participant who’s defaulted loses all rating factors earned on the event, the rule e-book states, and all prize cash earned on the event.