Cedric Mourier and 10 other Chair Umpire Mistakes

Published 04/26/2017, 11:16 AM EDT
Goffin & Mourier arguing over the call

During the 2017 Monte-Carlo Masters 1000 SF between Rafael Nadal and David Goffin on Saturday, there was a big controversy. 10th seed Goffin was leading 3-2 in the first set and was on game point. Cedric Mourier, the chair umpire, ruled the ball IN when Nadal hit a shot. But, the ball was OUT, as shown by the hawk-eye system. Mourier showed the mark of another ball and Nadal won the point. The crowd booed the Chair Umpire and the Belgian did not shake Mourier’s hand after the match. After that point Goffin only won a single game.


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This shows that Chair Umpires too commit mistakes. So, on this note we take a look at 10 mistakes Chair Umpires have made during a tennis match.


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10. Mohamed Lahyani, 2016 Cincinnati Masters

It was a Quarter Final match between Grigor Dimitrov and Steve Johnson at the Cincinnati Masters in 2016. At the start of the 2nd Set Johnson served and the ball was called OUT by Lahyani. Johnson immediately challenged the call and the hawk eye showed that the ball was IN quite comfortably. After the challenge, Lahyani accepted his fault.

9. Richard Haigh, 2014 Cincinnati

In the 1St Round 2014 WTA Cincinnati match between Sara Errani and Yanina Wickmayer, In the third set the Chair Umpire called the ball OUT on Errani’s service. But the Hawk-Eye clearly showed the ball was way IN. Errani and the umpire had a long argument but Errani had to replay the point. Errani won the match 7-6 in the final set.

8. Ali Nili, 2015 Indian Wells

In 1R 2015 WTA Indian Wells match between Lin Zhu and Francesca Schiavone, In the 2nd Set, veteran Schiavone was defending set points against Zhu after winning the first set. She played a drop shot and Zhu in an attempt to get the ball back played the ball, but the ball bounced on her side before going over the net. Spectators thought Zhu lost the point but Umpire Nili surprisingly gave the point and set to Zhu, who went on to win the match.

7. Louise Engzell, 2010 US Open

In this 4R US Open match between Kaia Kanepi and Yanina Wickmayer, In the 3rd set, Kanepi was serving, Wickmayer caught the line, but it was a late call and it was called OUT, so Wickmayer challenged, it was IN but. Even though Kanepi was still able to hit the ball back in court, but the point was NOT replayed. Kanepi lost the point.

6. Fergus Murphy, 2016 Australian Open


In 2016 Australian Open Quarter Final between Kei Nishikori and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, in the opening set Tsonga served and the Linesman called it OUT, but Chair Umpire Murphy overruled the call and said it was IN. Nishikori challenged the call and the ball was OUT. Nishikori won the point and the game.

5. Carlos Ramos, 2012 Australian Open

In 3R 2012 Australian Open match between Alexandr Dolgopolov and Bernard Tomic, In the 5th set Tomic was serving for the 1st game. Dolgopolov hit a shot close to the baseline, someone from the crowd called OUT, but the chair umpire or linesmen didn’t make any call, so Tomic signaled with his racket for a challenge. But, the point was played on. Dolgopolov thought the point was over,when he saw Tomic raise his racket. But he said he was hindered but Ramos gave the point to Tomic while the point should have been actually replayed.

4. Cedric Mourier, 2013 Rome

In 2R match in Rome in 2013 between Viktor Troicki and Ernest Gulbis, in the 2nd Set, Troicki hit a shot close to the baseline, The linesman didn’t call it out, but, Cedric Mourier overruled the linesman and called it OUT, but was IN. Troicki had lot of argument but Mourier gave the point to Gulbis.

3. Mariana Alves, 2004 US Open

In QF match at the 2004 US Open between Serena Williams and Jennifer Capriati, Mariana Alves made a series of blunders of calls in the match. Alves awarded or overruled the points which were clearly IN, on several occasions, but Alves awarded the points to Capriati. Hawk-Eye wasn’t used then. It left Williams furious after the match. The USTA later apologized Serena and the Umpire’s US Open was over.

2. Cedric Mourier, 2013 Madrid


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In 3R 2013 Madrid Masters match between Mikhail Youzhny and Rafael Nadal, in the 2nd set Youzhny was serving and he hit the net and the ball fell on the other side of the net. Mourier called LET, while the hawk eye clearly showed the ball was way OUT. Nadal asked Mourier to show him the mark, but, Mourier said that the ball fell on line so he can’t show the mark. Youzhny went on to win the game.

1. Cedric Mourier, 2014 Rotterdam


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In 1R match at the 2014 Rotterdam between Dmitry Tursunov and Grigor Dimitrov, Tursunov was given time violation for his slow play but, Tursunov in his changeover later asked Mourier about double standards. He said that why Rafa wasn’t given time violations even if he took more time between points and that if Nadal is not given time violation then he shouldn’t be too, rightfully.



Ameya Mahajan

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