Benoit Paire has destroyed two of his racquets after appearing to spit on the court, before tossing two drink bottles during the ATP Cup match in Brisbane against Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic.
- Benoit Paire threw a racquet-destroying tantrum after conceding the second set to Dusan Lajovic
- Paire appeared to spit, then destroyed two racquets before tossing two bottles onto the court
- The outburst seemed to focus Paire, who went on to win the ATP Cup tie in three sets
After losing a tie-breaker that saw the Serb go level in the tie, the Frenchman gesticulated with his arms raised before propelling a globule of spit onto the court.
Paire’s frustrations with Lajovic’s winner saw him split his racquet in half, before he marched to his player’s chair, retrieving a brand new, untainted racquet from his bag, and smashing it three times for good measure.
As the racquet lay on the ground in front of him, Paire, 30, chucked a drink bottle onto the court as he towelled off, then reached for another bottle nearby and flung it forwards, as if to reiterate the point.
The outburst copped plenty of criticism online, with sport journalist Uche Amako decrying Paire’s apparent spit as “disgusting behaviour”.
Uche Amako tweets Disgusting behaviour by Benoit Paire at the #ATPCup. Whatever his frustrations, you don’t spit on the court, smash two rackets and throw a bottle. Unreal level of petulance. Pathetic behaviour
The tantrum seemed to focus the player, who went on to clinch the third set and put France 1-0 up over Serbia in the team event.
Paire is no stranger to catching spectators’ attention on a court for right and wrong reasons.
During a tennis match in Germany last year, a rally against compatriot Jo-Wilfried Tsonga broke down into an impromptu game of football (or perhaps, foot tennis), to the delight of the crowd.
That foot rally ended when Paire attempted an audacious scissor kick but slipped on the grass surface. He had already been warned in that match for throwing his racquet in the first set.