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11th Sep 2023

Locker room footage reveals Aryna Sabalenka’s furious reaction to US Open final defeat

Callum Boyle

Aryna Sabalenka

Several people have criticised the behind the scenes coverage

Behind the scenes footage captured Aryna Sabalenka’s furious reaction to her US Open final defeat against Coco Gauff on Saturday.

Teenage sensation Gauff delivered an incredible performance inside the Arthur Ashe stadium as she came back from one set down to beat Sabalenka and secure her first ever Grand Slam title.

Sabalenka cut a frustrated figure and the 25-year-old acknowledged that during her post-match interview, saying: “It was more about me than her, I lost this match.”

Understandably, the Belarusian was visibly upset on Saturday and footage of Sabalenka returning to the locker room revealed just that.

Cameras caught her grabbing a spare racket from her bag and smashing it against the wall before throwing it in the bin.

While the reaction isn’t anything new, the video has sparked debate with some questioning why a private area of the court should be filled with cameras for the public to see.

Judy Murray – mother of Andy and Jamie – was one of those to call out the access-all-areas footage, saying: “This footage should never have been made public. A private moment in an empty training room after the disappointment of losing a Grand Slam final.”

Others also chimed in, with one user saying: “I’m not a big fan of these cameras, and I think players should probably start arguing for more privacy. Even gym stuff, which looks ‘fun’ and harmless is still a bit too much imo I get tennis is entertainment and this is their jobs, but the mental toll this all takes…”

A second posted: “This video should not be online. Love sportainment as much as the next person, but athletes should have their privacy to exercise their emotions. She was gracious on court after her loss; is it too much to ask to be left alone in this inner sanctum?”

Another said: “These cameras rub me the wrong way. Players should be given a level of privacy in moments like this.”