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Pliskova smashes umpire's chair in epic meltdown

Pliskova smashes umpire's chair in epic meltdown

Former world number one Karolina Pliskova is facing a hefty punishment after smashing her racquet on the umpire's chair in an irate outburst over an incorrect call in the second round of the WTA Italian Open. The usually stoic Czech disagreed with chair umpire Marta Mrozinska over a call when she put away an easy overhead at 5-5, deuce, in the third set.

Sakkari visibly winced as Pliskova vented her fury, taking several steps backwards before the Czech had stormed off, before shaking the umpire's hand. The ball, which was clearly in, was ruled out.

The chair umpire acknowledged that she "lost" the ball mark and therefore said the point should be awarded to Sakkari.

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Karolina Pliskova is now the world number six in the women's singles rankings, and topped the pile as recently as July 2017.

Pliskova's twin sister Kristyna took to Twitter to defend her, claiming Mrozinska as the "worst she has ever seen" and hoped that she would "never referee" a match involving herself or her sister.

For Sakkari it was the first top five win of her career and she will face Germany's 11th seed Angelique Kerber for a place in the quarter-finals.