World number seven Alexander Zverev is the latest tennis star to receive international scorn after being filmed partying despite declaring last week he’d social isolate after the suspended Adria Tour.
The 23-year-old German had been part of the Adria Tour event organised by Novak Djokovic which led to the Serbian and his wife Jelena along with three other tennis professionals contracting coronavirus.
Zverev tested negative following the tournament but apologized by putting any one at risk by participating in the tournament and announced publicly that he would “proceed to follow the self-isolating guidelines advised by our doctors”.
However, the German appeared on social media on Sunday from the account of German fashion designer Philipp Plein partying at a well-attended event on the French riviera with no apparent observation of social distancing rules.
Australian tennis player Nick Kyrgios, who slammed Djokovic previously and called him “boneheaded”, led the criticism when he said on social media: “Sascha Zverev again, man. Again, again - how selfish can you be? How selfish can you be?”
“If you have the audacity to put out a f—ing tweet that you made your management write on your behalf, saying you’re going to self-isolate for 14 days and apologising to f—ing general public about putting their health at risk, at least have the audacity to stay inside for 14 days. My god, have your girlfriend with you for f—ing 14 days. Jesus, man.
“Pissing me off, this tennis world’s pissing me off, seriously. How selfish can you all get?”
Zverev, who made the Australian Open semi-finals in January, is due to compete in another tennis tournament in Berlin next month.
Dominic Thiem was also part of the Adria Tour and may have tested negative, but is already playing at another exhibition event.
New York Times tennis writer Ben Rothenberg slammed Zverev specifically, when he exposed the video into the mainstream on social media and pointed the finger squarely at tennis players’ mindsets.
“This is my concern with tennis attempting to come back mid-pandemic: not that precautions cant be taken, but that too many tennis players are conditioned to be wildly self-centered and have no concept of how to act for the greater interest of a larger group,” Rothenberg wrote.
Plans remain in place to play the US Open in August and the French Open in September.