John McEnroe would be proud of this Wimbledon meltdown for the ages

John McEnroe would be proud of this Wimbledon meltdown for the ages

Published Nov. 15, 2016 2:04 p.m. ET

Viktor Troicki, a Serbian tennis player seeded No. 27 at Wimbledon, was two points from losing his second-round match to world No. 36 Albert Ramos-Vinolas, but was also two points from getting back on serve at 4-5 in the final set. At 5-3, 30-30 in the fifth, Ramos-Vinolas hit a first serve that was called wide, to no complaint, and prepared to hit his second serve. Then, without warning, the chair umpire overturned the call and determined that the serve had been an ace. Except, instead of saying he overruled it, he just said "40-30." And that's where we pick up our scene, which is divided into three parts for maximum hilarity.

1) Okay, I'm already dying. Troicki's reaction after "40-30" is like someone is getting attacked by a swarm of bees in a movie airing at 4 a.m. on Cinemax. There's so much anger and disbelief. Watch it on repeat. It's more entertaining than almost every scene of Game of Thrones this season. (Except that one where Hodor sits on the Iron Throne and Tyrion marries Sansa. Wait, spoiler alert. Sorry, I'm new at this.)

2) This is the best part, the part I've literally watched 25 times. I want you to focus on the ballboy who's standing at the baseline, absolutely terrified about what this raving lunatic clutching a tennis ball is going to do to him.

It's a mix of confusion, fear, hopelessness and desperation. You can see his mind going 1,000 km/minute. "Wait, what's he doing. Does he think I called it 40-30. I didn't. It was him. Move your arm. It won't move. Why won't it move? Say something. Say something. No, run away. Do these Polo uniforms come with a can of mace? Help. Help. I can't say the words. I'm thinking them but I can't say them. Help. Nothing. Oh my God, what's in my browser history. Is my mom going to look? I think I can take him. No, there's no way. Maybe. No, just run away. (Looks around frantically.) Is somebody going to save me. I'm just a volunteer."


3) In case we didn't know how Troicki felt about the event, he smacked the offending ball into the crowd, a cherry on top of crazy.


3) Troicki and Ramos played the next point. Troicki hit his return long and the match is over. The conversation, however, was just beginning.

4) Troicki's argument is the opposite of John McEnroe's famous "the chalk flew up." He's insisting that the ball is clean because it was wide. See? See?

The ump didn't see. Still, I think Troicki was right.

I think he was right.

5) That's five "what are you doings," if you're counting at home, one Serbian curse word and a great I'm-so-mad-that-I-don't-know-what's-coming-out-of-my-mouth line, "what do you want to talk about?" Seems to me that the answer was nothing and the ump and ball boy just wanted to get out of there.

6) "Well then you're an idiot. Sorry about that."


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