Amarissa Toth has apologized for erasing a ball mark throughout her Hungarian Grand Prix match in opposition to Zhang Shuai after the disputed line name led to Zhang tearing out of the competition.
On Tuesday, second-seeded Zhang hit a forehand cross that appeared to land on the road however was known as off by the linesman. The chair umpire stepped again to check out the mark and confirmed that the ball had landed outdoors the road.
Zhang was exasperated by the decision and requested to talk with the event supervisor. The match continued for yet one more level, however the disagreement over the disputed name continued earlier than Toth approached the mark and used his footwear to clear it as Zhang yelled at him to cease.
Zhang appeared visibly distressed through the substitution, and a physio was known as in to examine on her earlier than she opted to retire as she trailed 6-5 within the first set of their spherical of 16 in Budapest.
“I did not assume my very first WTA primary draw success of my profession would trigger such a storm,” Toth mentioned in a press release on the event’s Fb web page after her 6-3, 6-1 loss to Kateryna Baindl on Thursday. “I’m extraordinarily sorry for what occurred, I respect Zhang Shuai as a participant and as an individual. I by no means meant to disrespect, harm or upset anybody, not to mention Zhang Shuai.”
The native crowd had laughed at Zhang through the incident, whereas Toth shook his hand earlier than elevating his arms in celebration.
“I notice I should not have celebrated like I did after the sport and I am sorry about that,” Toth mentioned. “I acted within the warmth of the second and received caught up in my feelings and the second. I targeted on tennis, I did not wish to win like that.”
Toth’s conduct was shortly condemned by fellow gamers and greats like Martina Navratilova on social media, with Zhang taking to Instagram to complain concerning the attraction and thank those that supported her.
“I like you guys and all the ladies who help me and stand by my aspect,” Zhang wrote.
Toth, who initially defended her choice to erase the mark, mentioned she hoped to talk with Zhang sooner or later to specific her remorse.
The WTA mentioned Wednesday it was investigating the incident and the response.
Reuters contributed to this report.