Stan Wawrinka unhappy with Australian Open stance on booing – ‘That’s tennis. That’s what you want’
Stan Wawrinka believes tennis fans should be allowed to boo players as it is part and parcel of sport, saying they should only be kicked out if they go over the limit.
Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley announced earlier this week that booing and heckling of players will not be tolerated at this year’s hard-court Grand Slam with the move coming ahead of Novak Djokovic’s return to the event.
Nine-time champion Djokovic missed the season-opening major last year after he was deported from Australia over his unvaccinated status, but he will be back at Melbourne Park this year as his visa ban has been overturned.
Although the 21-time Grand Slam winner received a warm reception when he took part in the Adelaide International 1 in South Australia, there are fears that things could be different in Melbourne.
Tiley, though, had a warning for those who plan on booing Djokovic – or any other player for that matter.
“If they disrupt the enjoyment of anyone else – boom, they are out,” he said. “We don’t want them on site. They can stay away or we will kick them out.”
However, three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka is not too keen on making booing taboo as he feels spectators “should be allowed to do whatever they want” as longs they don’t overstep any mark.
“If they go over the limit then yes, but I think they should be allowed to do whatever they want,” the Swiss told the Herald Sun.
“They do it every year with every player – if they don’t like the player, or they like another one, they will boo one and cheer for the other one. That’s tennis. That’s sport. That’s what you want.
“So of course, things happened with Novak last year, and I think there was many mistakes – not only Novak. I do believe they will not boo him. They will be happy to see him and it’s going to be a great tournament.”
Fellow three-time major winner Andy Murray is on the opposite end of the spectrum as he not a fan of booing and he hopes Djokovic gets a warm welcome next week.
“I don’t like seeing players get booed, it’s not a nice feeling when that happens,” the former world No 1 said.
“Novak got a lot of support in Adelaide, I’m sure it will be the same in Melbourne.”
READ MORE: Australian Open men’s draw: Rafael Nadal faces Jack Draper; Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic in same quarter
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