'Would that happen in the women's tour?' Why everyone's talking about tennis player Alexander Zverev.

On Wednesday, world No 6 Alexander Zverev beat his Spanish opponent at Rod Laver Arena at the Australian Open, securing himself a place in the semi-finals. 

The German tennis player is good at what he does. He's agile and has a great serve, and right now he's focused on one thing - making it to the finals. 

But that's not what people want to talk about.

Over the weekend, the question being asked was whether his game deserved primary place on centre court when there was another men's round that could've had the flashier and more prominent location. 

On Thursday, after the second round, the second question asked had nothing to do with his swing.

"Do you plan to attend in person?" a reporter queried.

Watch the interaction below.

Video via Australian Open TV

She was talking about his domestic abuse trial being held in Berlin in May. So were the fans discussing his 'right' to the spotlight.

The 26-year-old is being accused of pushing his former partner and mother of his child Brenda Patea into a wall and choking her during an argument in May 2020. 

He's been ordered to pay a $740,000 penalty, a fine prosecutors in Germany can call for if there is enough compelling evidence to take a matter to trial. 


He doesn't have to appear in person in May if he doesn't want too, he can send a lawyer. Hence the question at the post-match interview.

But Zverev was visibly fuming at the query. 

"Wow," he responded.

"That’s a question? I just played four hours, 40 minutes. That’s not the first question I really want to hear, to be honest. I’ve got no idea."

Sure, maybe it didn't have to be a question so soon after his match. But Zverev shouldn't be surprised that people have questions.

Over in the women's competition, competitors are asking how he's even in Melbourne in the first place.

"They do what they do on that side... Would that happen in the (women's) tour? Probably not," remarked 2017 US Open winner Sloane Stephens when asked about Zverev's place in the game. 

She added that the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) "beats to their own drum," when dealing with issues like Zverev's. 

Last week Russian world No.13 Daria Kasatkina criticised Channel Nine for choosing to broadcast Zverev's match over the women's game. 

"No women’s tennis shown on TV. They are playing on Rod Laver, prime time and for what. Don’t wanna say who they actually showing now," she wrote on X on Tuesday.

"If you’re a female, then I would advise you to make a research about the guy you wanna watch and think again," she added, in response to a fan stating they'd prefer to watch Zverev. 


But Zverev isn't just playing in the Australian Open - he's been promoted this year to the Player Advisory Council For 2024. 

Players select a group from their peers to represent them for two-year terms, and this year Zverev's name was front and centre. 

Pretty much everyone in the men's competition has dodged questions about it, choosing responses like "I'm completely unfamiliar with it," or that it's "tough to comment" when asked. 


So it seems it's up to the women to call out the questionable optics, and Kasatkina is certainly not afraid to do just that. 

"That’s what I expected, unfortunately. For sure, there is an issue. In general, if there is a criminal [process] or something, I don’t think it’s the right thing to promote a person," she said, according to The Guardian.

The thing is, it's not the first time Zverev has faced domestic violence allegations. 

He previously faced allegations of domestic abuse from another former girlfriend, Olya Sharypova.

She accused him of punching her, grabbing her by the throat and behaving in a "controlling manner" at an ATP Masters 1000 tournament in Shanghai in October 2019.

An investigation was commissioned by the ATP in 2021, but it was unable to substantiate the allegations of abuse due to a lack of reliable evidence and eyewitness reports.

Zverev should of course be given the opportunity to have these latest allegations play out in a court of law. But what message does it send to victims of domestic abuse, to see an alleged perpetrator being promoted and celebrated on centre court with a trial still pending?

It's not a good look. 

Feature image: Cameron Spencer/Getty.

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