The crowd in Charleston loves Melanie Oudin, and who could--or should--expect otherwise? But last night, that crowd showed its ugly side.
Booing the umpire and linespeople when they made calls that went against Oudin was not exactly mature, but it also is just one of those things that happens when sports fans get excited. However, booing Oudin's opponent, Vera Zvonareva, when she asked the chair umpire to ask people not to clap during points, is another matter entirely.
Does the crowd really believe that Oudin wants them to clap during points? Both politeness and common sense dictate that the players require as little distraction as possible when they are serving and when they are involved in rallies.
Earlier in the week, Julia Goerges--who happened to be playing American Bethanie Mattek-Sands--questioned a line call on the Althea Gibson Club Court, and--after a bit of discussion--a man in the stands yelled at her "Stop whining and play!" But she wasn't "whining." She was making a case, and in the course of doing so, she was trying to make a living. Pro tennis is a recreational activity for the fans, but for the players, it's a job. They should be allowed to do it without interference from spectators.