Arthur Rinderknech does dumbest thing ever at French Open

Just when you think you've seen everything at the French Open, Rinderknech gives you something new.
Arthur Rinderknech at the French Open
Arthur Rinderknech at the French Open / BERTRAND GUAY/GettyImages

Arthur Rinderknech has never won an ATP before. He is 28 years old and ranked 69 on the ATP tour. He is likely close to the end of his career unless he just loves to play so much that he will keep taking the court no matter if he expects to win or lose (mostly lose). There is nothing wrong with that. If one can play professional tennis, they should as long as they can.

Just imagine, if you will, how grand it might have been had Rinderknech won his first tournament at the French Open. That would have been something movies might have been made about. A Frenchman winning at Roland Garros? That would be a dream.

Rinderknech had only made the second round at Roland Garros once, which was in 2023. Prior to that, he had lost in the first round three times. On Thursday, Rinderknech was playing in the second round against 28-seed Tomas Martin Etcheverry and winning. He was on the cusp of making his first third-round appearance at either a Grand Slam or a Masters 1000. He only needed to win one more set.

Arthur Rinderknech finds a way to literally beat himself at the French Open

But Rinderknech could not do it. Not because Etcheverry suddenly began dominating the match, but because Rinderknech got so frustrated with himself for no real reason that he kicked a sponsorship sign with his foot and was injured. At the time, the Frenchman led 6-3 7-6(8) 1-6 0-2. Likely out of pride, Rinderknech kept trying to power through, but after a couple of games, he retired.

Etcheverry ended up winning the match, but the silly score was 3-6 6-7(8) 6-1 5-0. Maybe he would have won the match anyway, as Rinderknech probably would have gotten very nervous by the end and tried to close out a match to reach a round he never had at an important tournament. At the time of the injury, though, Rinderknech was only a break down in the fourth set, and he was up a set.

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If nothing else, Rinderknech certainly made a memorable appearance at the 2024 French Open after suffering one of the dumbest injuries in recent history. There is nothing quite like a player stealing a loss from the jaws of victory while jamming their foot into a courtside sign. Hopefully, the sponsor won't sue him, too.

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