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Roland-Garros: Kato's "redemption", from tears of disqualification to victory in mixed doubles


Highlights: Miyu Kato won her first Grand Slam title at Roland-Garros 2023. The 28-year-old Japanese is 410th in the WTA individual ranking. Kato and her partner Tim Puetz beat Bianca Andreescu and Michael Venus 4-6, 6-4, 10-6. The pair were disqualified from the women's doubles after a ball girl was hit by Kato's shot. The Spaniard Sara Sorribes Tormo was judged as the real responsible for the disqualification.

The Japanese went through all the emotions this week on the courts of the Porte d'Auteuil. This Thursday, she won her first title

Selfies and autographs in shambles. This is the image that Miyu Kato will retain from her Roland-Garros 2023, unforgettable in more ways than one and concluded this Thursday with a first Grand Slam title, in the mixed doubles draw with her German partner Tim Puetz. The pair won the final played under a blazing sun on Court Philippe-Chatrier against Canada's Bianca Andreescu and New Zealand's Michael Venus in the super tie-break (4-6, 6-4, 10-6).

A nice final bouquet for the 28-year-old Japanese, 410th in the WTA individual ranking. Not qualified for the women's singles draw, Miyu Kato was engaged in the women's doubles with her Indonesian teammate Aldila Sutjiadi. No. 16 seed, the pair had advanced easily in the 3rd round. Until an opposition against the Czech-Spanish duo Marie Bouzkova - Sara Sorribes Tormo. The other unforgettable moment of the fortnight for Kato.


🙌 🇩🇪Congratulations @miyukato1121 & Tim Puetz!#RolandGarros

— Roland-Garros (@rolandgarros) June 8, 2023

The scene took place on Sunday. After a point lost at the net, the Japanese returned the ball from the backhand into the court of her opponents. All in the direction of a picker. Except that the bullet, too long, hit the girl's cap, causing long tears. After a simple warning from the referee and an apology from Miyu Kato, the supervisor finally decided to disqualify the pair. This also meant a loss of results (and therefore points earned in the world ranking), as well as the loss of prize money.

When Miyu Kato sent a ball to the other side of the court, it struck a ballgirl. Kato/Sutjiati were defaulted and they lost all prize money and ranking points.

But was it the right decision?#TheBreakTC | #RolandGarros

— Tennis Channel (@TennisChannel) June 5, 2023

"The last few days have been a real mental challenge"

A decision appeared unfair in the eyes of many observers, who considered the attitude of the opposing pair deplorable. The Spaniard Sara Sorribes Tormo was targeted and judged as the real responsible for the disqualification of the Japanese. "We didn't do anything wrong," she defended herself. The rule is the rule." On Monday, Miyu Kato, very touched by this episode, could not answer at a press conference, bursting into tears before returning and content with a few answers in her mother tongue.

And the emotion is still present several days after the incident. This Thursday, after her victory in mixed doubles, the Japanese spoke on center court, reading a text prepared the day before. "My English is not very good," she smiles. Thank you to my partner, I am delighted to have shared this victory and thank you for your support. Thank you to my coach, thank you for always being by my side in difficult times (tears come to him). The last few days have been a real mental challenge for me." "You've had all the support you deserve. This title is your redemption," retorts his teammate Tim Puetz.

Finally, the Japanese, not particularly supported during her match, the public not necessarily being aware of the whole story, had a word for her opponents of the women's doubles and the organization of the tournament. "I hope the ball catcher is doing well," says Miyu Kato. I hope to come back one day and play the women's doubles final. To Sara and Marie, my opponents, we hope that we will meet again to play a great match elsewhere. And, finally, at Roland-Garros, I hope for a positive outcome to regain my points and prize money. Thank you very much." This would make it possible to redress an injustice.

Source: leparis

All sports articles on 2023-06-08

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