London: Tennis players who grunt too loudly are putting off their opponents and spoiling the game for the millions of spectators, All England Lawn and Tennis Club chief executive Ian Ritchie has said.
Ritchie also admitted that Wimbledon officials were becoming increasingly uneasy about the practice.
“The players have an ability to complain about it, if one player is grunting too much and the other player doesn’t like it and it is distracting, they can complain to the umpire,” a newspaper quoted Ritchie, as saying.
“We have discussed it with the tours and we believe it is helpful to reduce the amount of grunting. We are one tournament in a global circuit. But we have made our views clear and we would like to see less of it,” he added.
He further blamed younger players, whom he said suffered from an “education problem” about the issue.
“I think there is an education problem with younger players. And certainly my postbag, if you say ‘what do you get most letters about’, I would say that grunting is high up,” Ritchie said.
“So, we are aware, whether you are watching it on TV or here, people don’t particularly like it,” he added.