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It’s no secret that the modern sports journalist has gone all in on having a political agenda. And as a result, athletes are showing less and less restraint toward sports journalists digging for a political angle rather than, you know, sticking to sports.
Belarusian tennis player Victoria Azarenka encountered one of these reporters last week and decided to clap back at the B.S. line of questioning.
After a reporter pressed the two-time Australian Open champ on a pro-Russia demonstration that occurred outside of Rod Laver Arena on Thursday, Azarenka smartly responded by calling out their agenda.
Azarenka Calls Out Woke Journalist’s Bluff
Azarenka’s response was fearless: questioning the reporter if she was more interested in politics than her play and advising the so-called sports journalist to stay out of the political game.
It was a testy response but emblematic of how athletes are losing patience with reporters trying to coax them into narratives.
The reporter started by asking Azarenka if she had any opinions on Novak Djokovic’s father being photographed with a group of pro-Russian supporters during the week and her thoughts on the pro-Russian storyline.
“There’s been a lot of scrutiny about a lot of the Russian and Belarusian players here,” the reporter said. “Is it difficult for you when you go out there to put all those things out of your mind? Do you think there are other players who get impacted by it?”
Azarenka pushed back on the question not by answering but by addressing the reporter and similar media members directly.
“I don’t know what you guys want us to do about it,” Azarenka said. “I don’t know what’s the goal here, that it’s continuously brought up.”
Azarenka continued, “These incidents that, in my opinion, have nothing to do with players. But somehow you keep dragging players into it. So what’s the goal here? I think you should ask yourself that question. Not me.”
“Are You A Politician?”
Rather than answering the tennis player, the reporter asked why she got frustrated with the question — showing just how out of touch with focusing on sports the journalist truly was.
“Whatever the answer, I’m going to give it to you right now, it’s going to be turned whichever way you want to turn it to,” Azarenka responded. “So does it bother me? What bothers me is there are real things that are going on in the world. And I don’t know. Are you a politician? Are you covering politics?”
“No, I’m a sports journalist,” the reporter answered.
“Yes. And I’m an athlete. And you’re asking me about things that maybe somebody says are in my control. But I don’t believe that. So I don’t know what you want me to answer. And if it’s a provocative question, then, you know, you can spin the story however you want.”
Though the sports media may flip this story on Azarenka to make her seem combative or rigid in her answer, it was a prime example of an athlete flipping the script rather than conforming to a journalist’s agenda.
It’s refreshing to watch an athlete, who will always hold the upper hand in a press session, push back with honesty.
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5 CommentsLeave a Reply
Big props to her. She handled herself so well with this idiot of a “sports journalist”. More athletes should take her lead.
This needs to be the response every single time.
Andrew Bogut…is based? Good to know.
She should have said that it bothers her when people pretending to be sports reporters show up to press conferences and try to hijack them with their political agenda. The “reporter” is doing exactly the same thing as the protesters outside the tournament she is asking about, except she is inside the tournament, pretending to be objective, while selling progressive bullshit.
Azarenka should have said that it bothers her when people pretending to be sports reporters show up to press conferences and try to hijack them with their political agenda. The “reporter” is doing exactly the same thing as the protesters outside the tournament she is asking about, except she is inside the tournament, pretending to be objective, while selling progressive bullshit.