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“Certain folks care more about a damn national anthem than marginalized communities being killed in the streets by racists” – Tennis fans defend Frances Tiafoe for wearing headphones during national anthem at Davis Cup


Tennis fans have shared their opinions on a commentator labeling Frances Tiafoe as “rude” at the Davis Cup Finals.

The US Davis Cup tennis team faced the Italian team in the quarterfinals in Malaga, Spain. Before the tie, the teams paid tribute to their respective home countries with their national anthem.

Interestingly, Tiafoe was seen wearing headphones during the national anthem recital. Although the headphones were not covering his ears, a few people found the act offensive, including the TV commentator and 1976 Roland Garros winner Adriano Panatta, who thought that the American player’s actions were disrespectful and called him “rude”. He further admitted that had he been the captain of the US team, he would have disbarred the player.

“He is rude. If I were his captain, I would kick him in the b*tt,” Adriano Panatta said.

Many fans, however, did not take well to Panatta’s comments and called him out for “dramatizing” the transpired event. One fan also noted that Tiafoe was being attentive and respectful.

“His hand is over his heart, he’s clearly paying attention. This is over dramatizing this, especially given a lot of athletes kneel for the anthem these days,” the fan remarked.

@RelevantTennis His hand is over his heart, he’s clearly paying attention. This is over dramatizing this, especially given a lot of athletes kneel for the anthem these days.

Frances Tiafoe’s girlfriend Ayan Broomfield defended the athlete by stating that nothing was playing on his headphones and lashed out at people for bothering the players with harsh claims over minor issues and jeopardizing their careers.

“They were off. there was nothing playing. people need to stop trying to cancel these athletes all the time. just let them play and leave them alone. Jesus,” she said, adding, ”I really hate people using their platform to cast negative narratives about athletes or entertainers without knowing the full context. It can be very harmful to people’s lives and careers.”

@RelevantTennis they were off. there was nothing playing. people need to stop trying to cancel these athletes all the time. just let them play and leave them alone. jesus.

@Your212Line @RelevantTennis exactly. I really hate people using their platform to cast negative narratives about athletes or entertainers without knowing the full context. It can be very harmful to peoples lives and careers.

Here are a few more fan reactions:

Oh hell nah this what we not Finna do to Frances Tiafoe. Feel like certain folks care more about a damn national anthem than marginalized communities being killed in the streets by bigots and racists. twitter.com/relevanttennis…

The funniest part about this “controversy” is most people defending and praising him are Americans 😭😭😭 twitter.com/relevanttennis…

A see a young man who has offered to represent his country, away from home and on a holiday. Hand over heart, headphones off the ear, choosing to standing at attention. twitter.com/relevanttennis…

nationalism is disgusting and i would applaud him if he didn’t stand up for the anthem at all. twitter.com/relevanttennis…

well thank god you AREN’T his captain then! sucks for you 🙁 twitter.com/RelevantTennis…

@RelevantTennis “a lot of fans were disappointed” really cause I’m a fan and wouldn’t give a shit if he gave the finger to the flag with his headphones on while listening to “this is america”, in fact I’d probably like him more

@RelevantTennis Maybe now we understand how important external sponsorship is and he is carrying out his sponsorship requirements. Can’t get mad at that. Plus they are half on half off don’t see the issue really


“A couple of weeks ago I was playing very aggressive” – Frances Tiafoe reflects on his Davis Cup loss to Lorenzo Sonego

Lorenzo Sonego defeated Frances Tiafoe at the 2022 Davis CupLorenzo Sonego faced off for the second time within a month in the Davis Cup quarterfinal tie between the US and Italy. The duo previously clashed in the Round of 64 at the 2022 Paris Masters, where the 24-year-old American emerged as the winner in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4.

Sonego, however, managed to turn the tables this time around and made a winning start for his home country of Italy 6-3, 7-6 (7). Speaking about his loss to the European, the US Open semifinalist said that conditions and his approach resulted in his loss at the Davis Cup.

“It was kind of flip-flopped. I was the one being aggressive, running him around, being aggressive. I was hitting the ball much harder,” Frances Tiafoe said about his Paris Masters win against Sonego.

“I think the balls are pretty fluffy here. It’s tough to hit through. But he would as well. A couple of weeks ago I was playing very aggressive and stuff, and today he was. That was part of the biggest difference,” he added.

Team USA were knocked out of the Davis Cup after facing defeat at the hands of team Italy 2-1 in the quarterfinals – with the sole victory by Taylor Fritz against Lorenzo Musetti.

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