Sofia Kenin turns into ugly American but with good reason

Kenin originally was upset about the court being wet.
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Sofia Kenin was angry. The American was attempting to play her opening match at the Italian Open against Italian (that is important later on) Lucia Bronzetti but it had recently rained and the court was damp. Too damp for Kenin's liking and when the chair umpire advised the players they would need to continue playing, Kenin complained with not-so-nice words.

Kenin did get her wish a couple of points later, however, when play was suspended due to court conditions. She was right that play should not have been ongoing, but her choice of words could have been better. She called officials "f*****g d*****a people, literally."

She had a point as playing in wet conditions on any surface can lead to injuries for players. Plus, the court was clay, and wet clay and a wet ball do not mix well. But as Americans are viewed as arrogant by nearly half of Italians (and much more so by Italy's Mediterranean cousins in Greece) and Kenin was playing in front of an Italian crowd, the audience was swift and negative.

Sofia Kenin gets really angry but with a good reason

This was likely made more intense by Kenin playing an Italian player. The issue is partly that while Americans might be seen as arrogant, Italian tennis crowds have gotten a reputation for booing too much. This includes some hate directed at Andy Murray during a 2023 Italian Open match when Murray was playing Italian Fabio Fognini.

Murray had a complaint about a bad line call and got into an argument with the chair umpire. The crowd booed vociferously and Murray later wrote on his Instagram account, "Stadium full of Italians booing and whistling, thinking I’m trying to cheat Fabio out of point. All because (chair umpire Mo Lahyani) couldn’t read a mark properly. Cheers mate."

Kenin wanted no part of the crowd booing her for rightfully saying the match should be temporarily suspended. After breaking Bronzetti's serve, Kenin said to the crowd, "F*** you!" which only caused more booing, of course.

A few points later the match was suspended again because of rain. Again, the American was not upset because she was losing or a bad line call but simply because of the weather and court conditions. As play was stopped multiple times, she had a logical point.

Though Bronzetti had no part in Sofia Kenin's anger, Kenin did get what she likely saw as sweet revenge on the Italian crowd by controlling the match against Bronzetti after play resumed. After the first set was tied 3-all, Kenin would lose only two more games to win the match 6-3 6-2. That was her first WTA victory since January.

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