Fury over Open handshake gone wrong
They may not be household names to average punters who only tune into the tennis for a couple of weeks each January, but there was plenty of excitement among those in the know when Barbora Strycova drew Yulia Putintseva in the first round of the Australian Open.
As the pair strode onto Court 5, tennis writers flooded Twitter to encourage people to grab their popcorn, sit back and enjoy the show.
Putintseva, the World No. 39 from Kazakhstan, won the match 6-4 7-6 (7-1) in one hour and 55 minutes but the on-court action played second fiddle to the immediate aftermath of their match when the pair met at the net.
As the two players came together the ritual didn't exactly go to plan, leaving both of them less than impressed.
As you can see in the video below, it was far from the sporting gesture the post-match handshake is supposed to represent.
I KNEW STRYCOVA AND PUTINTSEVA WON'T DISSAPPOINT ME! HANDSHAKE OF THE YEAR pic.twitter.com/hCo1PHmGnS— LorenaPopa🕵️♀️ 🏆🥖👑 (@popalorena) January 14, 2019
In a powerplay US President Donald Trump would be proud of, Strycova accused her opponent of trying to act like the top dog even after she'd already scored the most important victory of all on the scoreboard.
"I like to squeeze hand normal, but she squeezed me, like, hardcore! These bones - oww! Oww!" Strycova said afterwards.
"I was like, 'Why'd you do that?' She said, 'You squeezed my hand.' I said, 'I squeezed your hand normal! Just let it be.'
"I didn't really care. It's nothing big. Just, why?"
Omg Putintseva - Strycova ?! Bring All The Popcorn— Carole Bouchard (@carole_bouchard) January 14, 2019
Putintseva defeated Strycova in the fourth round of last year's French Open and maybe she wanted to reaffirm her dominance with an added display of strength after she accounted for her Czech opponent again at Melbourne Park.
One of the reasons there was so much hype among tennis nuffies when the two clashed is because they both have history in the handshake department.
Strycova famously engaged in some weird skin-on-skin action with Elina Svitolina at the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo in 2014. Not happy with the limp offering she received, Strycova taught the Ukrainian a lesson in the importance of always dishing up a firm, proper handshake.
Putintseva has made headlines for her handshake technique too. Playing at the Citi Open in Washington in 2016, the umpire in her clash with Varvara Flink refused to shake hands because Putintseva had complained so often during the match.
And in 2017 Putintseva didn't even look at Magda Linette after the Polish star defeated her in three sets at the Volvo Open in Charleston.