There has been a raging debate about the rule in place that led to the disqualification of Novak Djokovic from the US Open. A good amount of fans and experts believe that the penalty was harsh for an act that was ultimately no more than a mistake, while others believe the referee acted fairly.
There have also been discussions about a possible change in the rules to prevent such incidents in the future, but former World No. 1 Justine Henin seems averse to that idea.
The legendary Belgian is of the belief that rules ought to be strict in nature lest they are flouted. Henin further added, during her conversation with Eurosport, that Novak Djokovic’s act proved he was human rather than a machine.
Many defend Novak Djokovic because they believe it was a really difficult decision: Justine Henin
The decision to disqualify Novak Djokovic from the tournament after his act of anger was labeled by some in the tennis universe as unjust. They felt that the US Open Officials would have been more lenient and maybe docked the Serb of a game or a set at the most.
Justine Henin, however, believes otherwise. For her, strict rules are needed to maintain a modicum of discipline, or else the limits of the same rules could be under threat. The Belgian also feels Novak Djokovic got a lot of support after his disqualification as the decision was an incredibly difficult one.
"If we have a softer rule, what are the limits?” Henin questioned. “Many defend Novak because they believe it was a really difficult decision. I wouldn't change the rule, that's my opinion.”
Henin also pointed out that the people on the court ran the risk of getting injured due to acts like the one committed by Novak Djokovic. Irrespective of intentions, Henin believes that everyone must be protected and respected in the sport.
“It's just that, in the end, people get injured every now and then, even if that was not intended,” Henin added. "We have to somehow control that and set limits so that these things don't go on. We have to respect everyone in sport."
Novak Djokovic has long been perceived as an infallible persona in the world of tennis. His tennis was (and still is) seen as flawless, but there are now question marks about the Serb’s mindset after his fit of rage during the match against Pablo Carreno Busta.
Justine Henin, however, prefers to take something positive out of the situation. Novak Djokovic's disqualification gives her the feeling that he is human after all, instead of the ‘machine’ that he is frequently portrayed to be.
"We are all human and not perfect," Henin said. "Novak Djokovic is not a machine and I like the idea."Published 10 Sep 2020, 15:13 IST