On a tennis court, there are two archetypes of angry players.
The first category, the Ragers, tend to give credence to the maxim “actions speak louder than words.” In this case, their actions tend to revolve around racquet-smashing and other types of violent property destruction. Marat Safin is the prototypical Rager. The anger is always internally directed and hard to verbalize, so the Rager resorts to yelling in tongues and throwing things against hard surfaces. On a bad day, I’m a Rager. I’ve broken my share of racquets since I started playing.
The second category is Whiners. Instead of directing their anger inwards, Whiners direct their negative energy toward those around them – opponents, line judges, umpires; even fans. John McEnroe is probably the most famous Whiner who’s ever played the game. His trademark tirades are poetic even in the heat of the moment. While the Rager makes his point using brute force, the Whiner often operates with emotional sophistication and a dose of prickliness. At his worst, the Rager is liable to blast the ball ten feet out on purpose; Whiners will instead choose to hand the match over with a succession of ill-timed drop shots or simply by walking off the court and throwing his tennis bag into the crowd.
Snoo Foo told a story about two club players. She had stuck around to cheer on her friend who was an older guy and clearly outclassed by his young opponent. She and a couple of others wanted to support him knowing he would lose. But the old guy kept hanging in the points and kept bothering his young opponent with his steadiness and refusal to go away even when he was behind and losing. The young guys agitation kept growing and growing until finally he broke his racquet and sprayed e She aquipment around the court and grabbed his bag and left. LEFT THE COURT! Even though he was winning. He couldn't take it.
She was flabbergasted.