Capriati, Ferrero: Officials' calls should be better

Updated: September 3, 2004, 9:04 PM ET
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- Jennifer Capriati lobbied for instant replay Friday at the U.S. Open. And that was after a victory.

Juan Carlos Ferrero was angry about getting docked a point while losing in the second round just one year after reaching the Open final.

There's a whole lotta Grand Slam gripin' goin' on at Flushing Meadows.

Chair umpires "do not treat all players the same," Ferrero said after a 7-6 (2), 4-6, 6-7 (6), 6-2, 6-3 defeat against Stefan Koubek.

"Maybe it's easy to say code violation (to me), and maybe to other big players, it's not the same, here in the United States. So I'm not happy with the chair umpire."

Perhaps the complaining is a function of so many surprising results and tight matches, including Capriati's tougher-than-expected 6-0, 6-7 (4), 6-3 win against 17-year-old Russian Vera Douchevina to get to the fourth round.

Having finally moved ahead in the third set, Capriati thought she earned a match point when a shot by Douchevina appeared long. But the chair umpire disagreed. Capriati dropped her racket, put hands on hips, looked at the scoreboard, and walked over to discuss the call.

She wonders how accurate on-court rulings are, generally.

"Even from watching other matches, they haven't been too good," the eighth-seeded Capriati said. "This level of the game, when it's so close, and one or two shots can make a difference, I don't think it's fair."

With instant replay of some sort now used in the NBA, NHL and NFL, Capriati thinks it's time for tennis to catch up.

"I'd like to know what we're waiting for. I don't see why they don't start at least trying it," she said. "Money, maybe. I don't know. I don't see this tournament being short on money, you know."

Actually, a form of instant replay could be closer than she realizes. Last week, the U.S. Tennis Association, ATP and WTA tried out a system that uses six to eight cameras and GPS.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press