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Boris Becker Dislikes Women Turning Tennis into Grunt Work

Former Wimbledon ace Boris Becker thinks that women tennis players should be banned from grunting. It can’t be healthy, he says, and it’s unbecoming.

Russia's Maria Sharapova reacts at match point over Serena Williams, at the end of their Women's Singles, final match on the Centre Court at Wimbledon

Sharapova's grunt is as loud as a police siren

One-time tennis ace turned international playboy, Boris Becker doesn't have a reputation for prudishness. But in a recent interview with magazine GQ, he complained that the way women tennis stars grunt during matches is too sexual.

Not something one would expect such a notorious ladies man to grumble about, but presumably, he feels that everything has its time and place. Center court is for playing tennis, and if anyone wants to grunt, they should go elsewhere, such as a broom closet.


Serena Williams in action on court

Serena Williams likes to let it all out

"I'm amazed whenever I watch Serena Williams and Maria Scharapova," he carped, referring to the Russian star who's been called as noisy as a light aircraft.

With a ear-piercing yell that exceeds 100 decibels, she currently holds the record as the loudest woman in tennis.

"I can't help thinking it's bad for their vocal chords. It can't be healthy and it can't go on," insisted Becker.

"Grunting serves no athletic purpose and should be banned," said the three-time Wimbledon champ.

Making a racket

Boris Becker

Normally, Boris Becker likes to let it all out, too

In fact, opinion is divided among the experts on the point of grunting. Many coaches encourage their players to be as loud as possible on the grounds that it releases energy and helps them with their game.

Others say it's just a bad habit -- and distracting to opponents.

It's symptomatic of all that's gone wrong with tennis these days, says Becker, who told GQ that today's pros are "too goody-goody."

They only do what they're told by their advisers, he says, adding that while you hear them grunt more than you'd like, "you never hear them speak anymore."

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