Sara Errani convinced Kiki Bertens exaggerated injury despite leaving court in a wheelchair

Bertens left the court in a wheelchair (Picture: Corbis via Getty)

Sara Errani is convinced that Kiki Bertens was overexaggerating her physical issues in their dramatic French Open encounter, despite the fifth seed leaving the court in a wheelchair.

Errani, the Italian world No. 150, was beaten in a three hours and 11 minutes tussle on Court 14 at Roland Garros, failing to convert a match point in the most dramatic clash of the 2020 French Open to date.

During the match, she imitated Bertens’ movement on court – making it abundantly clear she thought there was nothing wrong with the Dutch fifth seed – and she screamed ‘vaffanculo’ (Italian for ‘f**k off’) after refusing to tap racquets with Bertens after the match.

Although Bertens was left sobbing at the side of the court before being wheeled away after the contest, Errani claimed her opponent looked ‘perfect’ when she saw her in the players’ restaurant after the match.

And she is convinced that there was no major issue on her opponent’s side.

‘I don’t like when somebody joking on you,’ said Errani. ‘She can play an amazing match. She played an amazing match, but I don’t like the situation.

‘One hour she’s injured, then she run like never. I don’t like that.

‘She goes out of the court on the chair, and now she’s in the locker [room] perfect, in the restaurant. I don’t like these things. I’m sorry.

Asked if she thought Bertens was exaggerating she replied: ‘Yeah.

‘I didn’t talk to her [in the restaurant]. I mean, congratulate her for the match. Then after the people say to me that I’m unfair person. It’s funny for me these things. I don’t think she did a good attitude on court. I didn’t like that.’

Asked again if she thought Bertens was hurt, she added: ‘I don’t know. Did you see her running less? I mean she run like never all the point for one hour, and you are one hour… You know these things. Of course, good job for her. If you want to do like that, is a good job.

‘I think she can even do the same without doing that. It was good. I’m bad because was hurting me and make me angry. So well done for her.’

Errani’s comments were put to Bertens – who said she was cramping in her ‘left leg, right foot and both hands’ – and she joked that she was in the wrong profession.

‘She can say whatever she feels like, but yeah, well, then maybe I should take some more acting classes or should pursue a career in that,’ said Bertens. ‘I’m not sure what she’s thinking, but, no, I didn’t feel really good on court to be honest.

Errani was unhappy with her opponent’s conduct (Picture: Corbis via Getty)

‘But a good thing I think it was for me that all the time the cramps were coming and going again, it was not like that it was staying in the body.

‘So I felt like I had to stay calm and not be pumped too much because all the time when I did the fist pump like I could not do the fingers any more normal, so I just try to stay calm and try to let the cramps go again, yeah.’

When asked how it felt to have her integrity questioned, Bertens suggested there was a sense of sour grapes on the Italian’s part.

‘It’s not nice to hear, no, of course not,’ she added. ‘But for me I don’t want to try to take it too personally because I also know like her frustrations.

‘I think she’s also frustrated with herself that she could not close out that match and but she had her opportunities as well, so it’s maybe not fair to take it out of me, she could also look to herself and just see like what she could do better.’

Bertens, who will face Katerina Siniakova in the next round, admitted it wasn’t her choice to leave the court in a wheelchair.

Bertens was in pain at the side of the court (Picture: Corbis via Getty)

‘It was really bad because I don’t want to leave the court in a wheelchair,’ said Bertens.

‘So I said like, Okay, no, I’m going to walk. And the physios were like, No you’re not, and I was like, Yes, I will.

‘And then my whole left leg started cramping. So they were really like, no, you’re going to sit down and we ride you off. So also I didn’t really have a choice, so, yeah, that was it.’

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