YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


November 26, 1985

John McEnroe allegedly shoved and spat at journalists in the lobby of his hotel in Melbourne, Australia.

The 26-year-old McEnroe is in Melbourne for the Australian Open tennis championships.

A group of reporters and photographers was waiting to speak to McEnroe about rumors that he wed O'Neal, daughter of actor Ryan O'Neal, in New York last week. Reporter Geoff Easdown of the Melbourne Herald said he had asked McEnroe if he would have his photograph taken with O'Neal.

"He then asked me to leave the hotel," Easdown said. "I told him I wasn't going to be ordered around by him. He then went off the deep end.

"He pushed me across the room, then grabbed me by the throat and tore my shirt collar. "But people started to gather and he backed off. He pushed me backwards over a chair in the lobby."

Easdown said he did would not take action against McEnroe.

Mike Porter, 25, a photographer for the News LTD bureau in Melbourne, said McEnroe had insulted him and spat at him.

"I had taken a photograph of McEnroe pushing the reporter backward and he was very rude to me," Porter said. "He asked me why I didn't find a proper job and asked how I slept at night. He also spat at me and I spat back."

McEnroe played down the incident.

"I moved a guy aside, and now it's like he's physically assaulted," he said. "All of a sudden he's beat up."

Los Angeles Times Articles