Rio 2016: Did the Brazilian boo boys go a step too far in taunting Dustin Brown after he suffered a twisted ankle?

The home crowd are regularly booing opposition in true pantomine fashion, but in jeering Brown after he hurt his ankle, they went one step too far

Matt Gatward
Rio de Janeiro
Sunday 07 August 2016 23:43
Comments
Dustin Brown holds his ankle in agony after suffering injury
Dustin Brown holds his ankle in agony after suffering injury

The Brazilian fans at these Rio Games are a pretty patriotic bunch, only too happy to get behind their own and cheer them on. No harm in that. It’s what home advantage is all about. But it almost went a step too far on Sunday when the crowd in tennis’ Centre Court booed Germany’s Dustin Brown who had fallen and twisted an ankle that would see him taken to hospital.

The home support is not scared to boo anyone daring to take on one of their own. They were at it during the rugby sevens on Saturday when Team GB played Brazil. Every time a Briton had ball in hand it was met with a cacophony of boos. It was part-pantomime but still slightly odd. Crowd disgust at an opponent is normally reserved for acts of villainy, not simply picking up the ball and running forward or twisting an ankle.

Brown’s crime? He had the temerity to take on local boy Thomaz Bellucci. OK, the dreadlocked German is an entertainer too and likes to play up to the crowd and he was taunting them to some extent. But every winner was booed, jeered and whistled extensively during the day’s first match on Centre, every double fault cheered.

But it went a step too far when he fell in agony after turning his ankle in the second set – an injury that forced him to retire. That’s not tennis.

However, when he eventually got to his feet he was given a standing ovation by crowd who had maybe seen the error of their ways… or perhaps they were just happy Bellucci was through to round two. Or perhaps it all just adds to the atmosphere at these events and that’s no bad thing.

"I'm happy to be in the second round but I'm very sad to see a friend with a serious injury," Bellucci said. "I hope it's not too serious and see Dustin soon on tour. It was a lot of fun. I think Dustin was enjoying a lot the atmosphere. For me it was amazing to play in the Olympic Games in my country. The experience was unbelievable. For me it's a very special tournament."

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in