Nalbandian disqualified after kicking judge at Queen's (video)

Jun 18, 2012

Angry Argentine wounds a line judge after lashing out when he lost a point during final

Clive Brunskill

EDITOR'S NOTE: Scotland Yard confirmed on Monday morning that the Metropolitan Police was investigating an allegation of assault against Nalbandian in relation to the incident at Queen's Club on Sunday. Police did not say who had made the complaint.

DAVID NALBANDIAN outdid even John McEnroe at Queen's Club yesterday when he was lost both his rag and the final of the tournament after being disqualified for an incident that left a line judge bleeding heavily from a leg wound.

The volatile Argentine reacted badly after losing his serve during the match against Marin Cilic and kicked out at an advertising hoarding. Unfortunately the sign was placed in front of the chair of line judge Andrew McDougall and Nalbandian's full-blooded boot shattered the plywood and his follow-through also piled into the judge's leg.

McDougall immediately recoiled in pain and rolled off his chair onto the grass. Were it not for the seriousness of the situation there would have been something vaguely comic about his astonished reaction. But when he recovered from the shock he lifted his trouser-leg to reveal an inch-long gash on his shin that was bleeding heavily.

"It was the moment the genteel pursuit of lawn tennis morphed suddenly and violently into a contact sport," reported The Daily Telegraph. "As the crowd gasped, Nalbandian appeared slowly to grasp the gravity of what he had just done."

Eventually, with McDougall still being tended to, he was disqualified. Then, when given the chance to address the crowd, he made a limp apology and tried to deflect the blame onto the game's governing body the ATP.

Cryptically, he tried to explain his rage by saying: "They put a lot of pressure on the players, sometimes you get injured because you play on a dangerous surface and nothing happens."

He did, though, find it in his heart to say sorry. "I do a mistake and I apologise. I feel very sorry for the guy. I didn't want to do that."

As a result of the default he forfeits the £36,144 runners-up prize and the ranking points on offer. The Times reports that he will also lose the chance of being seeded at Wimbledon as a result.

"Other players have had swearing fits and smashed rackets but David Nalbandian being thrown out for kicking a linesman outdoes anything that has gone before," reported The Guardian.

The Argentine does have a habit of losing his rag as he illustrated at the Australian Open earlier this year where he was accused of throwing water on a drugs tester.

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