French player threatens to sue Wimbledon umpire for playing match in rain

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In a discourse that was as sensible as an "I’m rubber, you’re glue" playground beef or, I don’t know, the upcoming presidential debates, French tennis player and No. 16 seed Gilles Simon threatened to take legal action against the chair umpire during his Wimbledon match against Grigor Dimitrov because he felt unsafe playing in rainy conditions.

The sky was barely spitting, as the Brits might say while drinking tea, looking at pictures of Princess Charlotte, debating the merits of Brexit and losing to Iceland in various competitions. Yet Simon, who had dropped the first set to Dimitrov, a former top-10 player who’s fallen outside the seeding line, was upset about it. Rather, he was probably upset about the fact that he was having to play a top unseeded player and was losing. The rain became his excuse.

While tennis was being played all over the grounds of the All England Club, seconds of rain be damned, Simon wanted to halt the match. It was 40-30 in the second game of the third set when the drizzle had started. To be fair, just a little moisture can make the already-slippery grass courts feel like a Slip’N Slide, thus Simon’s plea.

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Chair umpire John Blom disagreed. So, apparently, did Dimitrov, as Wimbledon umpires tend to concede if both players say the court is too wet or the sky is too dark. (This doesn’t happen too often, as one side can see the benefit of the other side getting all riled up about their denied request.)

This displeased the Frenchman. "I don’t want to play, when it’s raining, on grass. That’s it," Simon said to the chair. "If I play and get injured, I will sue you and you will pay."

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I’m not sure how the liability plays out in London but I’d like to find out because, you know, powdered wigs. Somehow, I doubt Blom would be at fault here. Or that Simon would actually sue because now that Britain isn’t part of the EU, it’s probably a lot harder.

Simon didn’t take his ball and go home, thankfully, and stuck around to lose in four sets to the unseeded Dimitrov. No word on who he’ll threaten to sue for choking.

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