• French Open

Federer: Phones could lead to cheating

ESPN staff
May 31, 2013
Roger Federer feels action may need to be taken to avoid such incidents © AP

Roger Federer fears the recent use of mobile phones at the French Open could lead to players cheating in a bid to overcome the rule of on-court coaching.

Sergiy Stakhovsky was fined around £1,300 for unsportsmanlike conduct for taking a picture on his phone to contest a decision from the umpire and later posting it in Twitter, while Gael Monfils recorded a video of the French crowd undergoing a Mexican wave in his second round clash against Ernests Gulbis.

While Federer was amused by both incidents, the record 17-time grand slam champion has warned the sport's governing bodies may need to take action in order to prevent the possibility of players using their phones to get assistance from their coaches.

"It's only going to happen more," Federer said on the recent craze of mobile phones. "I think it's pretty funny, actually. The problem is that clearly there could be coaching going on through mobile devices.

"It would probably be so easy to do. Go to the toilet and you hide it somewhere - I'm just saying anything is possible.

"You have to hope that the players use it in a funny way and it's not meant to be bad or disrespectful."

Monfils had asked the umpire whether he could use his phone to capture the scenery of the crowd during the changeover, therefore avoiding punishment as the use of phones on court is illegal, as is coaching during a match.

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