‘Clearly she speaks mixed’: Fed stunned
Tennis players aren't allowed to swear on the court. But when you can speak eight languages, you'd think you'd be able to get away with it.
Roger Federer tried to avoid being caught cursing in the third set of his Australian Open quarter-final win over Tennys Sandgren, but thanks to a fellow multilingual, he received a code violation.
At the time, he didn't seem to believe he'd been caught out, questioning who was able to hear him properly.
Federer's native tongue is Swiss German, but he also speaks fluent German, French and English. He can converse functionally in Swedish and Italian, while he also has some Spanish and Afrikaans (thanks to his South African mother) in his repertoire.
He revealed in his post-match press conference on Tuesday night he swore in a mixture of languages, while explaining he was frustrated about how he received the penalty.
"Back in the day I feel like we could speak to linespeople. Nowadays they tell me, Go speak to the umpire. Okay, I'll go speak to the umpire. I walk across the court because they are not allowed to speak to the players," he said.
"Honestly, to be frustrated at one point for over, I don't know, 15 hours [sic] throughout the match, I think it's normal. I found it a bit tough.
"It's not like I'm known to throw around words and whatever. It's not like the whole stadium heard it either. But no problem, I'll accept it."
As it turns out, the lineswoman who penalised Federer lives in Switzerland; which is why he was then asked if the expletive was in English.
"It was a mix. Clearly she (the lineswoman) speaks mixed. Didn't know that.
He joked: "Next time I got to check the linespeople."