[Fox News] Gael Monfils hit with interesting code violation at Citi Open after walking toward bench mid serve

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French tennis pro Gael Monfils advanced past the second round of the Mubadala Citi DC Open on Wednesday with ease, but his victory over Alexander Bublik didn’t come without incident. 

Monfils, who previously won the tournament in 2016, was comfortably leading 5-3 in the second set after already claiming the first 6-3. 

But with Bublik serving at 40-0, Monfils seemingly decided he would relinquish the game so he could close out the match serving. And so as Bublik served the ball, Monfils walked toward his bench. 

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“Code violation, lack of best efforts,” the chair umpire said. “Warning, Mr. Monfils.”

The warning prompted an audible laugh from Bublik, who was now headed toward his bench as well. 

The crowd swiftly reacted with boos as Monfils appeared to contest the call.

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Despite the hiccup, Monfils’ plan appeared to work out the way he intended and he won the match 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the Round of 16. 

The apparent attempt to conserve his energy comes just days after Monfils made reference to possible retirement plans in the near future. 

“I feel Elina [Svitolina] will play much longer than me,” he said speaking of his wife, via the Daily Express. 

“It might be one of my last tournaments in the States. Maybe next year. We don’t know. But soon. But I may come back to support Elina with the baby. So you’ll see me around.”

Svitolina also advanced to the quarterfinal round of the Citi Open after defeating Russia’s Daria Kasatkina 6-2, 6-2 on Wednesday. She will face either fourth-ranked Jessica Pegula or alternate Peyton Stearns. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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