A former star destroys Berrettini's haters: "I'm disgusted"

Adriano Panatta, former Italian tennis legend, defended his countyman from the exasperating criticism he is receiving

by Lorenzo Ciotti
A former star destroys Berrettini's haters: "I'm disgusted"
© Kelly Defina / Stringer Getty Images Sport

It's right to reflect. Asking questions appropriate to a problematic situation is equally correct. Trying to understand the motivations behind a certain moment (positive or negative) is the job of us in the media. But there is obviously a limit to everything. And the exasperating fury that many fans have when attacking Matteo Berrettini is deplorable.

After a 2023 characterized by many physical problems, which caused his sudden drop in the rankings beyond the hundredth position, 2024 doesn't seem to have started any better either. The Italian tennis player has in fact announced his windrawal at the Australian Open 2024, even before making his debut, due to yet another injury, this time to his right foot. The 26-year-old was supposed to face Stefanos Tsitsipas, but he preferred not to aggravate matters further and to preserve his physique.

As mentioned at the beginning of the article, unfortunately the now usual criticisms against the former Wimbledon finalist should be noted, who has been hit by a real curse and a media storm in recent seasons.

Berrettini© Kelly Defina / Stringer Getty Images Sport

Panatta defends Berrettini from his haters

The former Italian legend Adriano Panatta came to Berrettini's rescue, defending him without mincing words: "Unfortunately we lost Berrettini, he withdrew from the main draw because he still has pain in his foot. It's a shame because he went all the way to Australia, evidently convinced he could play. I want to make an appeal because I am disgusted by what is happening on social media against this boy who is accused of having a beautiful girlfriend and having a love story. They blame Melissa Satta," he said in displeasure.

"Love has never hurt anyone. Unfortunately social media is massacring them, it's truly a bad, unpleasant thing. This thing has nothing to do with it, unfortunately he was unlucky for a whole year. Bad luck strikes him again, let's hope it passes and he can return to what he was two years ago. He was in the top ten in the world, he was in the Wimbledon final, let's not forget that. Love has never hurt anyone," said Panatta.

Matteo could return directly to American hard court with a better ranking than the current one, which would at least allow him to be in the main draw of the ATP 1000 Masters in Indian Wells and Miami. The option of taking advantage of the protected ranking, given that the last match played dates back to August 31 at the US Open, is not at all remote.

Adriano Panatta