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Tennis: I lost my mind, says Rublev after ball outburst at French Open

Andrey Rublev in action during his first round match against Kwon Soon-woo, on May 24, 2022. PHOTO: REUTERS

PARIS (AFP) - Russia's Andrey Rublev said he lost his mind after angrily smashing a ball which narrowly missed a court groundsman at the French Open on Tuesday (May 24).

The world number seven blasted the ball against a courtside chair after dropping the first set of his opening round match against South Korea's Kwon Soon-woo.

It then rebounded and just whizzed past the head of the groundsman who was brushing the clay surface of the court between sets.

"I lost my mind for a moment, and of course I regret what I did. It's unacceptable to hit the way the ball I hit it," said the Russian, who went on to register a 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 win.

"Better if I just hit the racquet on the seat, because the ball can affect someone.

"This is unprofessional from my side, and hopefully I will never do it again."

Novak Djokovic was famously disqualified from the US Open in 2020 when he angrily swiped at a ball which hit a line judge.