Maria Sharapova Complains About Reporter James McOnie Stalking Her
A goofball TV show host from New Zealand has been hijacking Maria Sharapova press conferences lately with off-beat questions, and apparently the tennis star has had enough. Sharapova was in New Zealand for the ASB Classic as a tuneup for the Australian Open. While at the tournament, she kept getting annoyed by host James McOnie who did the “late night TV thing at the Super Bowl” to her all week. The video below is an example of what went on:
Fast forward to Sunday where Sharapova won her opening round match of the Australian Open. After her match, McOnie was there to interrupt the press conference once again, but this time Maria made her uncomfortable feelings known. When asked, Sharapova said she considered him a stalker.
The man then unfurled a cardboard sign on which he had scrawled: “I am not a stalker.”
“I don’t know why you’re here today,” Sharapova said. “That shouldn’t have happened. You even have a sign. Oh, goodness, that’s wrong,” she said.
That was on top of another incident that took place two days earlier and was easily two steps more creepy.
“You’re the guy from New Zealand, huh?” Sharapova said, when she recognised McOnie from this month’s Auckland Classic. “Oh God, you’re stalking me!”
“It’s not stalking if you love someone,” McOnie said jokingly, AFP reported, to which Sharapova replied: “It can be slightly, trust me.”
The 23-year-old also fended off the reporter’s next question, asking whether there was a “hot Russians club where you get together”.
“No. I didn’t know I was part of it. But no,” she said, according to AFP.
Oh boy. It looks like we crossed over from the “haha this is a little awkward” stage to “would somebody get this ridiculously creepy jerkoff out of here” a few days ago. If this guy keeps messing around like that, Aussie Open officials may have to revoke his credentials. Think about it — what member of the media shows up to a press conference with a sign that says “I am not a stalker”?