Tennis Player Quits Match In Tears After Opponent Displays 'Disgusting' Behaviour

Zhang Shuai ended up forfeiting following Amarissa Kiara Tóth's shocking move at the Budapest Grand Prix.
Amarissa Kiara Tóth (left) and Zhang Shuai are pictured during their match Tuesday at the Budapest Grand Prix in Budapest, Hungary.
Amarissa Kiara Tóth (left) and Zhang Shuai are pictured during their match Tuesday at the Budapest Grand Prix in Budapest, Hungary.
Screenshots via Asia News Today/YouTube

It seems that tennis has a new villain.

Hungarian player Amarissa Kiara Tóth is receiving backlash online due to her questionable behaviour toward her opponent, China’s Zhang Shuai, on Tuesday during the Budapest Grand Prix (also known as the Hungarian Grand Prix).

Zhang ended up retiring from (or quitting) the match after Tóth scuffed out a ball mark with her foot while Zhang was disputing a line call. To make matters worse, Tóth also seemed to celebrate when a tearful Zhang shook her hand to forfeit.

The match became controversial after Zhang hit a crosscourt forehand that appeared to be in but was called out by a line judge and an umpire.

In multiple videos shared on social media — and published by Asia News Today, with some editing, on YouTube (above) — Zhang can be seen pleading for the decision to be reconsidered. As she does so, Tóth decides to walk up to the mark.

“Wait, wait, wait! Keep the mark,” Zhang can be heard saying in one video as Tóth erases the mark with her shoe.

“Why did you do that?” a shocked Zhang asks Tóth repeatedly from the court.

“You’re making problems — that’s why,” Tóth can be heard saying back.

Zhang later made her decision to retire from the match, in which she was trailing Tóth 6-5 in the opening set. In the videos posted online, a teary-eyed Zhang can be seen speaking briefly with medical personnel from the sidelines before shaking hands with both the umpire and Tóth, signaling her forfeiture. Tóth is seen victoriously throwing her arms up in the air as soon as Zhang turns her back.

Zhang then appears to point her fingers at the crowd, which had booed her for disputing the call — a response that some have called xenophobic.

“The WTA has zero tolerance for racism in any form or context,” the Women’s Tennis Association, an organising body, said in a statement posted to Twitter on Wednesday. The WTA added that the “unfortunate incident that took place yesterday” is now “being reviewed and will be addressed”.

Zhang also posted a video of the ball mark incident to social media, thanking those who have supported her and doubling down on why she felt the judge and umpire made a bad call.

“When you wanted hitting closer to the line , even touched the line still OUT,” she wrote.

Many in the tennis community sided with Zhang after clips of the match circulated online.

Pro tennis players Ajla Tomljanović, Ellen Perez and Caroline Garcia publicly stated their support for Zhang while chastising Tóth for her actions.

Tomljanović said Tóth displayed “Absolutely disgusting behaviour.”

“Shuai is a better person than a lot of us for shaking the ref and that girls hand,” she tweeted Tuesday.

“Well that’s a quick way to lose respect from your peers,” Perez tweeted. “I’m actually shook by the level of disrespect from this girl.”

“We All know what kind girl you are @zhangshuai121 🙏🏻🙌🏻🤗,” Garcia tweeted Wednesday, using Zhang’s Twitter handle. “Take care of yourself.”


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