PARIS (Reuters) - Italian former runner-up Sara Errani accused opponent Kiki Bertens of exaggerating injury after losing a fierce three-hour second-round clash at the French Open on Wednesday.
Dutch fifth seed Bertens left court in a wheelchair screaming in pain after saving a match point and looking close to collapsing with cramp near the end of her 7-6(5) 3-6 9-7 win.
Errani, playing in her first Grand Slam main draw for two years after a doping ban, left court screaming Italian expletives after three times failing to serve out the match and squandering a match point at 6-5.
She stormed away without a word or a racket tap with a distressed Bertens. Bertens, who was previously 0-5 against Errani, then slumped in her courtside chair before suffering full body cramps and needing to be wheeled away.
There was, however, no sympathy from Errani.
“I don’t like, you know, when somebody is joking on you. She played an amazing match, but I don’t like the situation. One hour she’s injured, then she runs forever. I don’t like that.
“Now she’s in the locker room perfect, in the restaurant. I don’t think she did a good attitude on court.”
The 33-year-old Errani denied swearing at Bertens who later said she was disappointed by Errani’s comments.
“It’s not nice to hear, of course not. But for me I don’t want to try to take it too personal because I understand her frustrations. I think she’s frustrated with herself that she could not close out that match,” a charitable Bertens, who reached the semi-final in 2016, said.
Bertens said she was cramping in the left leg, right foot and both hands in the closing stages of the match and needed 45 minutes of intense massage after to recover.
She hit back at Errani’s suggestion she was putting it on.
“For me she can say whatever she feels like, but yeah, well, then maybe I should take some more acting classes or should pursue a career in that, I’m not sure what she’s thinking.
“I didn’t feel really good on court to be honest. The cramps were coming and going again so I felt like I had to stay calm and not get pumped too much because all the time when I did
the fist pump I could not use my fingers any more.”
Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Toby Davis
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