Fashion queen Mattek-Sands goes Gaga at Wimbledon

US player Bethanie Mattek-Sands returns the ball to Japanese player Misaki Doi during the women's single at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships at the All England Tennis Club, in southwest London. (AFP)

Wacky Bethanie Mattek-Sands caught the eye in her brief appearance at Wimbledon as the American wore a flamboyant tennis ball-covered jacket before her first round defeat on Wednesday.

Mattek-Sands, seeded 30th, described herself as "the Lady Gaga of tennis" after turning up at a pre-Wimbledon party decked out in a vivid yellow 'tennis ball' dress created by one of the pop provocateur's designers.

The American's lengthy list of fashion crimes also includes being fined for wearing a striped cowboy hat during a match at the 2005 US Open and donning a leopard-print outfit at the same event.

Although the All England Club usually demands a conversative, predominantly white outfit, Mattek-Sands lived up to her flamboyant reputation wearing a white jacket covered in tassles and cut-in-half tennis balls, knee-high socks and a top which had one sleeve missing to show off her tattoos.

"It was a felt jacket. It was actually almost tennis ball material. It was pretty sweet actually," Mattek-Sands said.

Sadly for Mattek-Sands, she proved to have more style than substance as the 26-year-old lost 6-4, 5-7, 7-5 against Japanese qualifier Misaki Doi.

She was surrounded by photographers before the start of the match but insisted her passion for fashion isn't a distraction.

"I prepared the best I could for that match, physically and mentally," she said. "Things like that, it's a couple minutes.

"If that's going to deter me from winning a match, I don't think I need to play professional tennis. It's disappointing, but I'm still confident in my game."

Asked if she the defeat meant she would bin the jacket - designed by Lady Gaga collaborator Alex Noble - Mattek-Sands said: "I actually haven't even thought about it. I'll have to ask Alex Noble if he wants to do something with it.

"It was actually very cool working with him, hopefully I'll be able to do it again."

Mattek-Sands was more concerned with a controversial line-call that went against her. She refused to shake the umpire's hand at the end and said: "I was just upset over that call. It was in the heat of the moment."

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