The hollow, rhythmic thump of of the tennis ball being walloped by the players was replaced by the horrifying shriek of American player Bethanie Mattek-Sands as she collapsed in agony at Wimbledon Thursday.
Mattek-Sands (📽 ESPN) pic.twitter.com/HK8q3HfFc5
— Ilya Ryvlin (@ryvlin) July 6, 2017
As she rushed the net, the 32-year-old’s right knee gave way in the third set of the match on Court 17 against Romanian player Sorana Cirstea.
While the spectators looked on frozen in horrified disbelief, Mattek-Sands laid on the gras court and screamed “help me, somebody please help me.”
Lucie Safarova in tears after horrible injury to her doubles partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands. Really grim to hear her in such pain. pic.twitter.com/yQEe2EKYn2
— Graham Henry (@grahamhenry) July 6, 2017
The New York Post reported:
Help eventually arrived to the outer Court 17, as Mattek-Sands’s husband, Justin, and her opponent, Sorana Cirstea, tried to console the sobbing player. It was nearly 20 minutes before medical personnel removed Mattek-Sands from the court via stretcher to a waiting ambulance, which took her straight to the hospital.
Messages of support are already coming in for Bethanie Mattek-Sands, who has suffered a horror injury.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) July 6, 2017
“The first response to Court 17 was within one minute, by a qualified ambulance technician,” an official All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club statement said, according to the Evening Standard.
“The player was kept on court while pain relief was given. The player was then transferred directly to an ambulance and taken under emergency conditions to a hospital,” the statement continued.
— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) July 6, 2017
Although Mattek-Sands is a doubles specialist with her partner, Lucie Safarovabut, she was a wild-card entry to the singles at Wimbledon. She won her first set against Cirstea 6-4 and lost the second in a tie-breaker. Her fall occurred at the beginning of the third set.
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