Victoria Azarenka slammed her first-round opponent at the Qatar Open, Yulia Putintseva, and said the Kazakh player ‘needs a psychiatrist.’
The former World No 1 won the ill-tempered tie 5-7, 6-2, 7-5.
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Azarenka also accused Putintseva of cheating after the latter called a trainer on court just when Azarenka was about to serve to stay in the match.
Having slipped to 0-4 in the decider, the Belarusian had clawed back to level the set. But after Putintseva held her serve to make it 5-4 she called asked for medical attention.
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A fuming Azarenka marched to the bench and complained to the chair umpire.
What's her problem….She needs a psychiatrist – Azarenka pic.twitter.com/OgYfuFp3Yr
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“Before my serve, she can do that. What’s the problem?” she was heard saying.
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“She has to wait for me to serve, she threw her racquet like seven times.
“She needs a mental coach, she needs a psychiatrist.”
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As Putintseva had let the 4-0 lead slip she had broken a few racquets in frustration. After closing out the match at 7-5 in the third set, Azarenka roared in celebration.
Not surprisingly, the two women had a frosty handshake at the net.
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“There was way too much stuff in this match,” Azarenka said in the press conference. “Unnecessary stuff as well.”
The two players have a history as well.
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At the Grampians Trophy in 2019, Azarenka had saved a match point before beating Putintseva.
The Kazakh player had slammed a racquet on court and refused to shake hands with Azarenka after the match.