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Novak Djokovic Hits Line Judge In Face At French Open

Novak Djokovic Hits Line Judge In Face At French Open

Novak Djokovic accidentally hit a line judge in the face with a ball... again.

The incident happened during a match that saw the world number one cruise past Karen Khachanov - 6-4 6-3 6-3 - and in to a record 11th straight quarter-final at the French Open.

The Serbian player was left red-faced after he stretched for a forehand in the first set, which sent the ball flying into the baseline judge's face.

He immediately went over to the official to see if they were alright.

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However, the incident obviously brought back terrible memories of the 33-year-old's faux-pas at the US Open this year, when he was disqualified after petulantly hitting the ball directly at a judge's head.

Following yesterday's (5 October) incident, Djokovic apologised profusely to the official involved.

He said: "My gosh, it was very awkward deja vu.

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"I'm actually trying to find the linesperson and see if he's okay because I saw he had a little bit of a bruise, like redness, in that place in the head where the ball hit him.

"I hope he's fine. I mean, he definitely dealt with it in a very strong and brave way. But it was a hit because I was very close.

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"Obviously because of what happened in New York, people I guess are going to make the story out of this.

"It has happened to me and to many other players in the last 15 years that I've been on the tour.

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"I've seen it a lot when the ball ricochets from the racquet and the frame, hits someone in the stands, or someone that is close to you or line umpire. Yeah, it was a very awkward situation."

Djokovic accidentally struck the linesperson with a ball. Credit: Eurosport
Djokovic accidentally struck the linesperson with a ball. Credit: Eurosport
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This comes just a few weeks after Djokovic was heavily criticised for hitting a ball at the throat of a judge at the US Open.

Djokovic immediately held up his hands in apology, and walked over to the line judge to make sure she was OK.

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Fox Sports reports that he was heard saying at the net: "She doesn't have to go to the hospital for this.

"You're going to choose a default in this situation? My career, grand slam, centre stage?

"If she would have gotten up right away..."

However, the player had broken the rules by hitting a ball 'dangerously or recklessly within the court, or with negligent disregard of the consequences' and was disqualified.

Featured Image Credit: Eurosport

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Dominic Smithers

Dominic graduated from the University of Leeds with a degree in French and History. Like you, Dom has often questioned how much use a second language has been. Well, after stints working at the Manchester Evening News, the Accrington Observer and the Macclesfield Express, along with never setting foot in France, he realised the answer is surprisingly little. But I guess, c'est la vie. Contact us at [email protected]