the fury around press conferences at Roland-Garros took another extraordinary turn on Wednesday when the journalist has been temporarily banned to ask a question in a supermarket.
Player press conferences were in the spotlight this week after Naomi Osaka announced her withdrawal of Roland-Garros following the backlash of his decision to boycott them.
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Organizers put the hammer on a reporter on Wednesday when they asked a question in a supermarket.
This year’s Roland Garros press conferences are being held digitally and most accredited journalists are not on site.
A reporter, known for his left-field questions, said he was “actually at the supermarket” when he had the chance to speak to Alexander Zverev.
This was apparently a “step too far” for the organizers, who confirmed that the journalist’s credentials had been revoked for this reason.
However, Roland Garros officials later announced he was recovering his accreditation after apologizing.
Asked about the incident after his second round match on Tuesday, Zverev said: “He’s a very nice guy. I hope he gets his media pass back.
“I don’t want to be the reason he lost his media pass.
“I think he did it more as a joke. But on the other hand, I also make jokes sometimes that are badly taken.”
Zverev seemed to be referring to a cheeky comment he made about Osaka ahead of his first-round match, which was widely condemned by fans.
Walk the field for the toss before his victory over Oscar Otte, Zverev was informed by chair umpire Louise Azemar Engzell that he was late.
“You know how Naomi said you could fine her for every game she wasn’t at the press conference?”
“You can fin me every game I’m late for.”
Zverev and Tsitipas advance to the third round
Sixth seed Zverev had to come back to straight sets in his first round match but managed to keep him to three sets this time, beating qualifier Roman Safiullin 7-6 (4) 6-3 7-6 (1).
“The first week you play guys, some of them play the first, second, third time in a grand slam,” Zverev told reporters.
“They are very motivated. They are delighted to play on the big courts, as I thought they were today.
“I think he played a fantastic game. I’m happy to have finished in three sets. The game was really not easy.”
And Stefanos Tsitsipas has yet to give up a set at Roland Garros, but the fifth-seeded looks to improve his game when he faces imposing John Isner in the third round.
The fifth seed is seen as the biggest danger for Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic after a brilliant 2021 so far, and he followed the victory over Jeremy Chardy with a 6-3 6-4 6-4 victory against the ‘Spanish Pedro Martinez.
But Tsitsipas was frustrated with his performance, saying: “I felt like I was having better days at Roland Garros, so I would like to see myself play a little better next time.”
He has won his last three meetings with Isner, but the duo have never met on clay and Isner, who beat Filip Krajinovic 7-6 (6) 6-1 7-6 (5), is taking full advantage of the conditions hot and dry.
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