Wednesday, June 01, 2005

French Open officials need to think about security

In 2003, the Glasgow streaker invaded the court during the men's final at the French Open. Yesterday, during the women's French Open quarterfinal match between Lindsay Davenport and Mary Pierce, a protester suddenly appeared on court.

People may find these antics amusing, but they are terrible reminders of what happened in Hamburg in 1993 when a Steffi Graf fan ran onto the court and stabbed Monica Seles in the back with a boning knife, putting her out of the sport for two years, and effectively ending her overpowering dominance in women's tennis. Seles had to recover not only from the stab wounds, but from post-traumatic stress disorder. Considered by many to be on the path to becoming the greatest women's tennis player of all time, Seles has never been the same since the incident.

It's time for the French to close the security gap at their Grand Slam. The next visitor on court may not be as amusing as yesterday's protester.


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