On Monday, Novak Djokovic hit a line judge. Again. In the face. This is the second Grand Slam in a row where he’s hit a line judge. This time, however, the mishap occurred at the French Open, and we presume, on accident. The judge was not injured, and Novak proceeded to defeat Karen Khachanow in the fourth-round matchup without further incident.
Now that we know that the man wasn’t hurt, we can laugh about it. As far as we’re concerned, these incidents can’t happen often enough. And lately, the top player in the world has delivered. At least he wasn’t defaulted like last time.
French Open officials determined that this incident was an “accident” because he was “in the act of playing” when the ball left the racket. If he did it on purpose, then at least he’s doing a better job of disguising it now.
“It’s a very awkward situation,” Djokovic said. “I hope he’s fine. He dealt with it in a strong and brave way. But it was a hit because I was very close.”
“Obviously because what happened in New York, people, I guess, are going to make the story out of this. It has happened to me and to many other players in the last 15 years that I’ve been on the tour.”
Translation: Don’t even try to imply that I did this on purpose. Kick rock.
He’s right that there’s nothing to read into here, so we should be able to have a laugh this time. But if we’re being honest, we were going to laugh anyway.