Boris Becker’s comments about Wimbledon player’s fiancée truly ‘crossed the line’

<p>Becker was defended by the BBC after he was accused of sexism over the comments</p>

Becker was defended by the BBC after he was accused of sexism over the comments

AFP via Getty Images

Wimbledon commentator Boris Becker decided to veer off from game talk as he spoke about what nationality has the best-looking women - and Twitter was appalled.

On Wednesday, during the game between world No. 1 player Novak Djokovic versus Hungarian player Marton Fucsovics game at Centre Court, the former tennis star discussed how Hungarian women are the “prettiest in Europe” while the men’s game was occurring.

Djokovic ended up winning against Fucsovics with 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 straight sets and will advance into his 10th Wimbledon semi-final.

His comments came after a picture of Boszormenyi appeared on screen and co-commentator John Inverdale said: “That’s Fucsovics’s fiancée. Her name is Anett Boszormenyi. That’s quite a good name for the partner of a tennis player, it’s always good to have a partner called Anett.”

Becker mused: “They do say they have the most beautiful women in Hungary. I wouldn’t know that but she’s certainly very pretty.”

Inverdale seemed to ignore Becker’s comment, adding: “I’d like to thank my Christmas cracker from 1978 for that joke.”

Stephanie Hillborne, chief executive of Women in Sport, branded the pair’s remarks disrespectful and inappropriate, saying: “When two men are comfortable talking about women in this way, never mind on live TV, it shows there is still more to do.”

Meanwhile, Chris Goldsmith, a tennis tweeter, wrote in response: “Boris Becker and John Inverdale talking about Hungarian women being the best-looking women in [the] world during Novak Djokovic v Marton Fucsovics isn’t really the analysis I was expecting on Wimbledon Centre Court.”

“Why is Inverdale still employed at all? He has form. Wimbledon really is still 1950s Britain to the BBC. I dread this time of the BBC calendar,” someone else added.

A third said: “John Inverdale has verbal diarrhea - can NOT stop talking. Needs to remember he’s not on radio and should let the viewer become immersed in the game rather than have to turn [the] volume down!”

“Disgraceful BBC using John Inverdale to comment on a #Wimbledon QF when the guy has no background in tennis doesn’t know the basics of the sport and debates the ‘attractiveness’ of Hungarian women & #Fucsovics‘ girlfriend with @TheBorisBecker#sexist#djokovic another wrote.

The BBC has not apologised over the incident, instead issuing a brief statement defending Becker.

It said: “Boris Becker made a light-hearted comment that was not intended to cause offence.”

That hasn’t done much to assauge people’s rage. See other reactions to the situation below.

This isn’t the first time Inverdale was side-eyed for commentary about women.

In 2013, Inverdale came under fire for comments about now-retired tennis player Marion Barotli’s physique.

While presenting the women’s Wimbledon final on BBC Radio 5 Live, he had this to say as Bartoli was getting ready to face off Sabine Lasike:

“I just wonder if her dad, because he has obviously been the most influential person in her life, did say to her when she was 12, 13, 14 maybe, ‘listen, you are never going to be, you know, a looker.’”

Bartoli had no clue about the remark until after her win.

As a result, hundreds of complaints flooded the BBC to which they apologised, accepting the remark as “insensitive.”

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