French Open surprise package German Laura Siegemund and commentators were left fuming at the chair umpire after a time violation was called in the middle of her serve action.
Petra Kvitova powered past unseeded Siegemund 6-3, 6-3 to reach the semi-finals of the French Open.
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The 30-year-old seventh seed, a two-times champion at Wimbledon, reached the last-four stage on the clay courts at Roland Garros for the second time since 2012 and has yet to lose a set at this year's tournament in Paris.
Siegemund, ranked 66th in the world, did not pose a challenge in the opening set but gave a good account of herself in the second despite suffering a lower-back problem midway through the set.
But at deuce at 2-2 in the second, Siegemund became frustrated with the chair umpire in a crucial moment.
As she was serving and raised her arm to toss the ball, chair umpire Marijana Veljovic called a service clock time violation.
Siegemund held her pose, to show the umpire she was in the middle of her service action, and said: “I had my arm up.”
“I was in the middle of my serve.”
There are two sides to every story...
Laura Siegemund and the chair umpire have a difference of opinion on the serve clock running out at #RolandGarros.
WATCH: https://t.co/lDUPnhnaMe pic.twitter.com/VTo7vIyzXc
— TENNIS (@Tennis) October 7, 2020
She proceeded to argue with Veljobvic and was eventually broken in the service game.
Commentators fume at Siegemund time violation
This prompted Eurosport commentators Annabel Croft and Chris Bradnam to slam the umpire for the ‘wrong’ timing.
“I'm still fuming about that situation we've just seen,” Croft said a few minutes after the time violation.
“I've never seen an umpire... either she had her eyes down on her stopwatch and wasn't noticing that the player was actually midway through her serve.
“She has had to stop her service motion, and now you are going to delay it even more because you have stopped her just before her serve.
“So what was the point of that? Her arm was already up and she was already putting the ball in the air.
“I’ve never seen that before. I really hope this umpire has a look at that, actually maybe even makes a statement because I think she totally got that wrong.”
Fellow commentator Bradnam added: “I think that was absolutely absurd and completely unnecessary.”
Fans also agreed the timing was unfortunate.
Laura Siegemund: “Are you giving me a violation or not?”
Marijana Veljovic: “Yes” #RG20
— The Tennis Podcast (@TennisPodcast) October 7, 2020
Beyond ridiculous. I have always admired Eva Asderaki-Moore, but really? Laura Siegemund’s hand in the air to serve and she calls a time violation?
— MinetteLewis (@minette_lewis) October 7, 2020
Siegemund getting a time violation for that is absolute rubbish. Doesn't enhance the game in any way. #RG20
— Geraint Jones (@jones_itfc) October 7, 2020
Siegemund literally about serve, time violation... tough
— Philip Fama (@tweener_head) October 7, 2020
Stupid of the chair umpire to call time violation on Siegemund when she was literally 1/2 a second away from hitting the ball. These umpires are just too awful.
— DC612 (@bhoovi) October 7, 2020
@radio_RG Laura Siegemund right to be annoyed re ‘time violations’...!
No chance Nadal or Djokovic or Serena will be given time violation after 1 second...!
— Tommy Groome (@tommyg111) October 7, 2020
Siegemund called for serve clock violation. Rule needs to change. Once server tosses ball point should be considered in play. Don’t allow players,to catch toss. Should be a fault if not hit. Some players toss ball with no intent to hit & catch it to avoid time violation.
— Mike Galli (@Tennisbum11) October 7, 2020
Despite the interruption, Kvitova was dominant and went on to convert her second match point when her 32-year-old opponent served a double fault.
The Czech will meet the winner of the all-American clash between Danielle Collins and Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin for a place in the final.
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