Stefanos Tsitsipas wasn’t taking part in on the U.S. Open on Tuesday, however he nonetheless was dominating the dialog. Gamers and press alike had been obsessed over his lengthy breaks and alleged teaching, whether or not he was simply bending the principles or openly dishonest.
Andy Murray, after he misplaced to Tsitsipas in 5 units within the first spherical Monday, ripped the 23-year-old for taking prolonged breaks throughout play in a match that lasted almost 5 hours.
Article I, Part W, Paragraph 4 of the 2021 Grand Slam rule guide limits ladies (who play best-of-three-sets) to at least one journey off court docket and males (best-of-five) to 2 journeys “for an affordable time for a bathroom break, a change of apparel break, or each.”
Fourth-seeded Alexander Zverev, who final week in Cincinnati accused Tsitsipas of getting mid-match teaching, joked that the third-seeded Greek star may “go to the moon and again on a rest room break,” techniques he discovered unbecoming of a participant of that stature.
“It’s not regular,” mentioned Zverev, who received gold on the Tokyo Olympics and is using a 12-match successful streak after cruising to a 6-4, 7-5, 6-2 first-round rout of American Sam Querrey on Tuesday. “I don’t consider that [Tsitsipas] wants to do this, as a result of if you happen to’re high three on this planet, you’re among the best within the sport. These sort of issues occur at junior occasions, at futures, at challengers perhaps, however not while you’re high three on this planet. You might be allowed to do this, but it surely’s an unwritten rule between gamers.
“He’s gone for 10-plus minutes. His dad is texting on the telephone. He comes out, and swiftly his tactic utterly modified. It’s not simply me however all people noticed it. The entire sport plan adjustments. Both it’s a really magical place he goes to, or there may be communication there. However I additionally don’t wish to disrespect him. He’s an ideal participant. He’s No. 3 on this planet for a cause. … However I do consider, and Andy mentioned it as properly, there’s some degree of respect that everyone must have between gamers.”
Murray had mentioned he misplaced respect for Tsitsipas after their first-round conflict. American Reilly Opelka took a unique tack totally, pointing his finger on the press as a substitute of one other participant. The large bearded Floridian, one in every of 15 People within the backside half of the draw Tuesday, dispatched Kwon Soonwoo 7-6 (3), 6-4, 6-4 within the first spherical, then dissed the media.
“It’s a ridiculous. I perceive it’s getting press as a result of tennis is lame and tennis media sucks they usually’re horrible,” Opelka mentioned. “It’s scorching and humid. And for the press which have by no means stepped foot on a tennis court docket of their life, by no means been within the surroundings, couldn’t final half-hour out on this humidity, on this warmth. It’s bodily, our sport is.
“My footwear are dripping, they’re leaking sweat. … After two units, we’re ingesting, we’re hydrating lots, now we have to make use of the lavatory. To alter my socks, footwear, my inserts in my footwear, shorts, shirt, every thing, the entire 9 yards, hat, it takes 5, 6 minutes. Then by the point I stroll to and from the court docket …
“I don’t know Tsitsipas. I doubt he’s getting coached. I extremely doubt it. … I don’t suppose we must always have on-court teaching in any respect, however I strictly go to vary as a result of it’s scorching and it’s humid. If folks don’t perceive that, then clearly they’ve by no means spent a day within the lifetime of knowledgeable athlete or come near it.”
If Opelka was that sweaty, it was purely from the humidity, not the competitors, as he wanted simply 1 hour 40 minutes to dispatch Soonwoo.
Tied because the tallest ATP participant ever at 6-foot-11, Opelka got here right into a Grand Slam seeded for the primary time. He regarded the half with 55 winners, 33 of them through aces. A robust server with a power-forward body, he reached 141 mph and hit extra aces within the ultimate set (14) than his foe did all day.
“Guys know what I’m doing out right here. That’s the great thing about it for me. They know what I’m doing and I do know that they know; however I’m sticking to my weapons, and if they will get by, too good,” mentioned Opelka, who will face Lorenzo Musetti within the second spherical. “That additionally helps hold me calm. I’ve quite a lot of readability for what I’m doing.”
— With AP