The Worst Tantrums of All Time in Men's Tennis

Erik WallulisContributor IIINovember 12, 2011

The Worst Tantrums of All Time in Men's Tennis

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    There are certain moments in any sport that break the threshold of a player's tolerance. We've seen a lot of these in men's tennis (unfortunately many from Americans), and undoubtedly will see many more in the future.

    Though considered by many to be the most dignified and effete sport along with golf, tennis has had some explosive characters in its history and some unparalleled outbursts. 

    From some of the games' most famous stars to those who are known only for these incidents, here are some of the most memorable.

Mikhail Youzhny

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    Youzhny had never before struck me as too temperamental, but few other players would react in such an extreme manner as this.

    It took self flagellation to almost a religious level, and nobody around knew quite how to react.

Andy Roddick

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    No collection of this sort could be complete without Andy Roddick, and this is just one out of several career's worth. 

    He questions the Umpire's education, and even whether or not he has ears, throwing an impressive panoply of insults in the process.

Jeff Tarango

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    Casual tennis fans probably don't even know who Jeff Tarango is, as his career was entire forgettable.

    If they do, though, it's probably because of this.

    He showed up at Wimbledon having not had a single victory in six prior appearances and ended up being the first player in the Open Era to default himself from a Grand Slam match.

    The umpire pushed him quite a bit, giving him court violation after court violation until the American couldn't take it any more, literally walking straight off the court.

John McEnroe

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    McEnroe's tennis tantrums have extended far beyond even his professional career.

    Here's a video that shows that age may have affected his game, but never his impertinence.

Marat Safin

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    Marat was creative in more than just his play, shown in the great variety of his on-court outbursts.

    Here's a video that shows this through a fun montage of racquet smashing and rage from the mercurial Russian.

Jimmy Connors

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    These two always brought out the best in each other, in both their play and their personalities.

    Connors (of course) has numerous other memorable outbursts, but his ones with McEnroe are the most recurring and explosive.

Greg Rusedski

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    Rusedski's outburst during this match actually made Roddick look sedate.

    He cursed repeatedly at the umpire, smashing racquets in and around his chair while doing so. Unfortunately, it ended up doing little for his play.

Goran Ivanisevic

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    Ivanisevic smashed probably about as many racquets as he had career matches.

    Wait and see just why he was eliminated from his match in the video.

Ilie Nastase

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    Nastase had some tantrums on court but also some inexplicable behavior and highly entertaining jokes.

    This video includes a variety of them, including when he asks the line judge, "can you overrule your wife?"

Xavier Malisse

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    Malisse shows an extreme willingness to fight in this video and almost attacks an increasingly terrified lines woman. 

    It's a fitting end to the list, as it's among the most radical reactions you'll see in the sport.