Benoît Paire’s blow-up in Argentina showed the mental toll of the pandemic but contracts still have to be fulfilled
In the last 16 at the Argentina Open in Buenos Aires this month, all hell broke loose in the form of a Benoît Paire explosion. The world No 31 was leading by a set against the young Argentinian qualifier Francisco Cerundolo when he contested a line call. After raising his voice as he raged at the umpire, Nacho Forcadell, Paire terminated the argument by spitting bitterly on the contested ball mark. It was the beginning of an extended, excruciating meltdown that ended with Paire shamelessly tanking the final games. He closed out the match by deliberately double-faulting.