Tennis fans are not taking lightly to Serena Williams’ ex-coach Rennae Stubbs’ recent comments on Holger Rune.
Aged just 19, Holger Rune has stunned the tennis world with his exceptional skills in the past year. The Dane has lifted an admirable four titles so far in his young career, with his biggest coming at the 2022 Paris Masters, where he beat Novak Djokovic in the final.
Rune, however, has also earned a negative reputation for his on-court outbursts. He hasn’t secured a place in the good books of a few of his colleagues, such as Casper Ruud, Stan Wawrinka and Jannik Sinner, either.
Rennae Stubbs recently chimed in with a few harsh words of her own. The former Aussie player scorned Rune for his growing unlikability among peers and called him “punchable” for his antics.
“Man! He’s disliked on tour. Is there a person that likes this kid? It’s amazing; he just p***es people off on the court and the garbage that he carries on with,” she said on the Rennae Stubbs Tennis Podcast. “Being so punchable, can I say that? Punchable with his antics, and the way carries on.”
Despite Holger Rune’s passionate outbursts during matches, the 19-year-old is generally known to be cordial and well-mannered off the court, which has earned him an ever-increasing fan base.
Stubbs’ comments about the rising star thus did not sit well with tennis fans. Many blasted the Aussie for her disagreeable take on the reigning Paris Masters champion and declared that her words promote violence.
“Stubbs saying Holger Rune is “punchable” is disgusting bias from the rotten tennis media and it’s also inciting violence. The negativity of the tennis media is despicable,” one fan said.
Stubbs saying Holger Rune is “punchable” is disgusting bias from the rotten tennis media and it’s also inciting violence. The negativity of the tennis media is despicable.
— Scoop Malinowski (@scoopmalinowski) April 26, 2023
Another fan suggested that the tennis elite tend to bad-mouth those who are emotional on the court, but promote those who have a history of violence.
“Yeah the problem is that a kid who’s just not trying to always look like a nice guy is considered punchable while players who put people in danger are considered good for the sport. then we wonder why nobody cares about tennis anymore right?” the fan said.
yeah the problem is that a kid who’s just not trying to always look like a nice guy is considered punchable while players who put people in danger are considered good for the sport. then we wonder why nobody cares about tennis anymore right? https://t.co/5PYjB9G3P5
— gayrbiñe (@muguruthlesss) April 26, 2023
Here are a few more fan reactions to Stubbs’ comments:
why is a grown woman calling a 19 year old ‘punchable’, like hello 19 year olds are meant to be annoying, they’re 19!?!?!? https://t.co/gvPpnDg4td
— emily (@andreyrublevs) April 26, 2023
holger actually has these retirees shook omfg https://t.co/zovVcUApk5
— elena rybaKINO (@slaymilagiorgi) April 26, 2023
she’s actually so bad vibes it’s crazy https://t.co/i5KEwwvGBy
— HOErenzo flopsetti (@mooseKnuckles__) April 26, 2023
@rennaestubbs Ik you are not deadass serious when you support NK, who has many antics of his own. What has Rune really done 🗿 https://t.co/4EfS3eynmr
— vaquero pequeño (@LouisXXIV) April 26, 2023
I know she can’t be serious the way she always supports NK. 😐 https://t.co/fSxOOkb6pz
— Ashley says abolish countries. (@littlegnome16) April 26, 2023
Stubbs needs to keep her mouth shut bc most things she says are so foul https://t.co/MM0UZJ1xsY
— colin (@tompenko) April 26, 2023
@rennaestubbs please just stop talking. he’s 19 years old, still a kid, and you’re being nasty towards him and threatening him with violence, it seems like the @WTA should sanction you for harassment, go back to being invisible you stuck up botched plastic surgery looking snout. https://t.co/augLzLqnxD
— Kyra | #5inMadrid 🇩🇰🏆 (@atpwtathottie) April 26, 2023
I’m sorry but how is this ok? It’s bad enough that Rennae Stubbs has given a platform (her podcast) to incite violence against Russian and Belarusian tennis players, made xenophobic remarks about Djokovic fans, and now she flat out calls a teenage tennis player “punchable” https://t.co/pZljouN5gO
— Srihari (@srihariravi12) April 26, 2023
Is really an adult asking if anyone likes this kid? For God’s sake a KID??? What kind of devil you have to be to ask that… Unbelievable
I like you @holgerrune2003 https://t.co/1IcA0mL8PY
— I V A N A (@mala_Ica_) April 26, 2023
has she looked in the mirror? 😂
— dara (@xergvv) April 26, 2023
the same stubbs who thought it was okay when kostyuk said she’d like to punch her russian colleagues, right?
— clara (@rubledev) April 27, 2023
rennae stubbs has talked shit for so long now but this is the peak of it..he’s a talented kid and you either get on board and accept tennis needs characters + talent like him or sit down https://t.co/NBvKFTQF4J
— ✨ (@simpforfroyo) April 26, 2023
“Cannot have 100 players, all of them best friends with each other” – Holger Rune on disagreements with colleagues
Holger Rune recently opined that having a few disagreements with colleagues is nothing out of the ordinary, and shared his belief that everyone being friends with each other is unnatural.
“You cannot have 100 players and all of them are best friends with each other,” Rune said in a recent interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
The World No. 7 suggested that heat-of-the-moment scenarios are unavoidable in a sport like tennis, and are not necessarily bad up to a certain limit.
“There always will be some moments and things will happen. If you can show it to a certain point, then it is a positive thing for the sport,” he said.
After his successful title defense at the BMW Open in Munich, Holger Rune is currently contesting the Masters 1000 Madrid Open, where he is the sixth seed. The Dane is set to play his opening match in the Round of 64 against Alexander Bublik.