French tennis player Maxime Hamou has had his accreditation to Roland Garros revoked for the remainder of the French Open for being a creepy, entitled jerk to a female reporter while she tried to interview him on live TV yesterday.
Maly Thomas, a reporter for Eurosport’s Avantage Leconte, dodged Hamou’s kisses and ducked away from him as she attempted to do her job, only to have Hamou wrap his arm around her neck and pull her away from the camera.
“The management of the tournament has decided to revoke Maxime Hamou’s accreditation following his reprehensible behavior with a journalist yesterday,” the French Tennis Federation said in a statement.
In an interview with Huffington Post France, Thomas called the incident “frankly unpleasant” and said, “If I hadn’t been live on air, I would have punched him.”
Hamou released an apology on Instagram today:
After the show “Avantage Leconte,” I have to give my deepest regrets to Maly Thomas if she felt hurt or shocked by my attitude during her interview. I just lived a magnificent week here at Roland Garros as I lived my most beautiful thrills as a tennis player, and I allowed my overflow of enthusiasm to bleed clumsily toward Maly, who I know and respect sincerely. Nothing but what is written was my intention. I am at her disposition to present my apologies in person if she would like it. I again learn from my mistakes every day to become a better tennis player and a better person.
The 21-year-old Hamou received a qualifying wild card and earned a spot in the main draw, but lost in the first round of the French Open in straight sets to Pablo Cuevas.
Correction (4:25 p.m. ET): This post originally stated that Hamou received a main draw wild card. He received a wild card for the qualifying rounds.
Translations by Jorge Corona