Monica Niculescu blasts Caroline Wozniacki as cheat storm erupts

Monica Niculescu has angrily hit back at Caroline Wozniacki after the world number one accused her of cheating.

During their clash at the Qatar Open, which Wozniacki won, the Dane complained to the umpire regarding Niculescu’s grunting, which she claimed was timed to put her off her shots.

“It’s the only way she can win, is to put people off,” Wozniacki said to the umpire.

“It says in the rule book that you’re not allowed to grunt when your opponent’s about to hit. It is clear in the rule book.

Wozniacki continued the complaint in her post-match press-conference, adding: “Obviously she’s a player that tried to get into your head.

“She’ll hit the ball and then two seconds later when the ball is on my side and I’m right about to hit, she’ll start grunting and make a loud noise. And she’ll change the grunt according to what she feels like.

“It’s disturbing. It’s one thing if you hit the ball and you start grunting straight away, then you can grunt a little longer — I don’t have a problem with that. But it’s when you’re about to hit your shot and you’re prepared, and all of a sudden a grunt is coming.

“It’s in the rules that they’re not supposed to do that.”

However, Romanian Niculescu has blasted back, angrily refuting Wozniacki’s accusations and claiming her behaviour was not befitting of a world number one.

“That was very bad from her, I have never heard a No. 1 to talk like that,” she said.

“I am really disappointed by what she said and I think she gives herself too much importance.

“I didn’t want to get in her head. This is how I play.”