Tennis News: French Open bird and Bernard Tomic's bizarre retirement

  • Chair umpire becomes hero of bird
  • Tomic's spat ends in retirement
Bernard Tomic at the 2022 Australian Open
Bernard Tomic at the 2022 Australian Open / Graham Denholm/GettyImages

The 2024 French Open has been filled with weird officiating, badly-behaved crowds, and some monumentally great matches. Of course, the point of the vent is to entertain tennis fans, but we have mostly gotten more than we expected. For instance, the Alexander Zverev versus Rafael Nadal match in round one might have been a straight-set victory for the German, but both players were excellent.

The tennis has been so fantastic that even the birds seem to want to watch. Or maybe they were just trying to avoid all the rain in Paris. During the third-round match between Daniil Medvedev and Tomas Machac, and during a changeover (important to point out as the bird was not struck by a ball), a bird landed on the court.

Unfortunately, the bird appeared somewhat gimpy as if it could not fly away. While both players were off the court, chair umpire Damien Dumusois got down with a towel, scooped up the bird, and carried the animal to a nearby doorway, and gave the bird to a person waiting to take the animal...somewhere. Hopefully, somewhere safe.

A French Open bird is saved and Bernard Tomic's odd on-court argument

The crowd appreciated the efforts of the chair umpire and the bird letting the umpire walk it off the court as the audience cheered on. Also, Medvedev won the match and moved on to the fourth round. Machac is now free to spend more time bird-watching.

In even stranger news, former top-20 player Bernard Tomic was playing a Challenger event in Little Rock, Arkansas (I should stop there because even that seems strange enough) when his day suddenly got much worse. Tomic has not truly been relevant in professional tennis for some time, and many times he seems like there is something a bit off about him. An example is what happened next.

During a match against Yuta Shimizu and after losing badly in the first set, Tomic got into an argument with his girlfriend. She was sitting in the stands and watching. Apparently, she had tested positive for COVID a couple of weeks before and Tomic was feeling poorly so he must have assumed he had contracted the virus as well. He was blaming how he felt on the loss.

Next. Rafael Nadal discusses being watch at the French Open. Rafael Nadal discusses being watch at the French Open. dark

After being looked at by a physio, Tomic decided enough was enough and he retired. Before that, Tomic was heard to say, "You tested positive for Covid today" to which his girlfriend answered, "No, that was two weeks ago."

Suffice it to say, Tomic might be sick, but that likely has nothing to do with COVID-19. He might soon find himself as irrelevant to his girlfriend as he is irrelevant to the world of tennis.

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