Wimbledon Should Ban Gross Grunting Tennis Players

Nicole Fabian-Weber

victoria azarenkaWimbledon officials -- and fans -- have had it with the grunting. Popularized 20 years ago by Monica Seles, and thoroughly embraced by tennis stars such as Victoria Azarenka and Maria Sharapova (whose grunts have actually reached 105 decibels), it looks like the trademark animalistic noises may become a thing of the past.

Ian Ritchie, the head of the All England Lawn and Tennis Club (which hosts Wimbledon), euphemistically told the Telegraph that he "discussed it with the tours and believes it is helpful to reduce the amount of grunting." In other words, shut your big, fat traps, ladies, because it's messing up the game.

I say "ladies" because, let's be honest, the women seem to be more guilty of it than the men. Is it really necessary to yell out loud like a banshee when you're hitting the ball? Does it improve your game? Or are you just doing it to screw with your opponent?

Not only am I all for the reduction of grunting in tennis, I encourage banning it altogether. When Ritchie spoke to the Telegraph, he mentioned that he'd like to see less of it, but didn't say what, if anything, would happen if it didn't stop. Why not fine players who feel the need to grunt? I bet they'll stop then even if they claim they "can't" like Victoria Azarenka does.

Azarenka, whose grunts have registered at 95 decibels, says that she "can't change it" because it's "part of her breathing system" and what "helps her play." She also then proceeded to say that other players "have their own tricks." So, wait, is it part of your breathing system or part of the "game"?

Whatever it is, I say it's stupid. Tennis is supposed to be a civilized sport. If I wanted to hear grunting, I'd listen to my shih tzu snoring. Which, you should know, is both part of his breathing system as well as a game.

Do you think grunting should be banned in tennis?

Image via ataelw/Flickr

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