Hi everyone!!! I am Cosmin from Bucharest, Romania. I found this thread accidently. I know Mohamed Lahyani from TV and he drew my attention especially in those matches with Roddick, Baghdatis and many others that don't agree with the calls made by the linesmen. Ya he is a funny umpire and makes even the dullest match a nice one. So here comes my and my sister story:
All started last year in September durring the BCR Open Romania 2007. On a sunny Sunday in the last qualifying day, me , my sis and a friend were sitting right behind the palyers’ benches. On centre court was set to start the last match of qualifyings and while I was aimlessly watching on the court I saw a man in the chair umpire seat. I recognized him but I couldn’t remember where I saw him for the first time. Well in a few seconds all came back to my mind, Mr. MO as you call him was in that chair. In that moment my sister jumped out on the court and asked him for an autograph. He replyed politely , “Ya, sure”! His face filled with joy and was very nice to my sister and near his signature he attatched a Freezing like this one
. Durring this funny “process” on the court appeared one of the french chair umpires, Emanuel Joseph. He looked at my sis and was amused. Then my sis came back to us and the two umpires started a little chat and both smiled at her. Emanuel said to Mohamed something like this : “You have fans everywhere, especially young fans”. On Wednesday the last match between Igor Andreev and Marc Gicquel on the Centre Court was umpired by MO. This time we had better seats, right in front of the chair umpire and players, cuz we wanted to get the best pictures of our fave players, you know. I was surprised to see how many fans Andreev had, cuz all the arena cheered for him and Gicquel felt like he was in hell. The french palyer became very frustrated and couldn’t concetrate upon his shots and on the important moments of the match. His level of play dropped very much. Andreev’s fans were all like DAVAI IGOR!!!!! DAVAI!!! ( I don’t know if I spelled it correctly-sorry if not). I was rooting for Gicquel. A bunch of Igor’s fans was like 2 or 3 meters away from me and MO told them, PLEASE BE QUIET DURRING THE FIRST AND SECOND SERVE!!!! In the last set Giquel had a breakdown and yelled at some one from the audience and said I WILL RIP YOUR HEAD OFF, BE QUIET!!! MO tried to calm him down, it was a weird moment. Unfortunately Gicquell lost that match. After the match me and my sis called MO to our box and asked him for another autograph and 2 pics, one with me and one with my sis, but she was too nervous and didn’t get a pic with him but I did :P, I told him that we apperciate his work very much, and he said: OOOHH THANK YOU!!!! with his thick mediteranean accent. And I was pretty amazed to see that a lot of people were waiting in the line after me to take a pic with MO or an aoutograph from him. He is a Star, right?!!!! Another funny moment was when the audio speakers from the centre court made a weird sound, it was like a blow and all that happened durring a match umpired by MO. All of us includding MO got a nasty scare . Here comes the best part of the tournament!!! I think in a semi-final match made by MO (all the time MO, ya I know ) the crowd was cheering for a player ( I can’t remember his name) and the noise in between the points was disturbing for the players. Then MO said to the audience PLEASE STOP MAKING ANY CALL DURRING THE POINTS! and after the ENG call he tried to say the same thing in Romanian, so instead of saying VA ROG NU MAI STRIGATI IN TIMPUL JOCULUI! ( it’s not a mot-a-mot translation because it would sound weird) he said PLEASE STOP MAKING ANY CALL DURRING THE PUNCTE (which is points in ROM). The crowd started to laugh for about 2 minutes I think and MO laughed too. I forgot to tell you that on Sunday’s final me and my sis got a picture with him, so yaaaa my sis got her picture (even though I was there too) and congratulated him for the final. I also have a few pics with him but I’ll post them another time.