Having won the first set against Marin Cilic in the finals of the grass-court Wimbledon warm-up event, the Argentine lost his cool going into the second set after losing a serve to lag behind at three games to four. Missing a crucial shot at game point was enough to tip him over the edge, and instead of buckling down to concentrate on his performance, Nalbandian instead “kicked out” at an advertising hoarding, which subsequently crashed into chief line judge Andrew McDougall ‘s chair, cutting him open across the shin.
Immediately disqualified from participating in the rest of the match, Nalbandian claimed to be sorry for his actions which were required “to let off steam after losing the point” despite the consequences of his childlike behaviour. However he refused to accept that disqualification was suitable punishment stating that “sometimes everybody do (sic) a mistake and I didn’t feel it had to end like that, especially in a final”.
The ATP however clearly believed that simply disqualifying him from the finals match wasn’t enough punishment for the unintentional attack on the match official, and fined the professional tennis player $12,560 for unsportsmanlike conduct in addition to stripping him of his $57,350 prize money.
Although he insists that he will still compete at Wimbledon when the tournament starts next Monday, Nalbandian is also being investigated by police for the incident following an anonymous complaint that was filed against him. When asked to comment on who made the complaint, the Metropolitan Police refused to answer however they did confirm that investigations were taking place – “We are aware of an incident at the Aegon Championships…A complaint has been made and (we) are now investigating”.