Andy Murray and Ash Barty pay tribute to each other
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Andy Murray has subtly hit out at Stefanos Tsitsipas once again over his lengthy bathroom breaks at the US Open. The third seed infurated the Brit when he left the court for eight minutes during their first-round clash, with Murray labelling it “nonsense” and “cheating”. During his second round match against Adrian Mannarino, Tsitsipas took another prolonged toilet break and received boos from the crowd after adding to the controversy, and Murray has now weighed in.
Tsitsipas caused controversy when he took an eight-minute bathroom break ahead of his fifth set against Murray on Monday, August 30.
The 2012 champion slammed his opponent after losing in five sets, admitting he had lost respect for the Greek star after the lengthy delay, which Murray believes “influenced the outcome of the match”.
The Greek seemed unbothered by the recent controversy surrounding the length of time he leaves the court, as he took another toilet break for more than seven minutes after dropping the third set to Mannarino in their second round match on Wednesday night.
Murray has now taken to Twitter to aim a sly dig at the world No 3, clearly having seen Tsitsipas’ repeated off-court antics.
JUST IN: Tsitsipas booed for another toilet break at US Open after Murray feud
“Did anything interesting happen overnight @usopen ?” the Brit tweeted on Thursday morning, adding an inquisitive spectacle emoji.
It’s not the first time Murray has taken aim at his rival on Twitter following their fiery opening clash at the US Open.
The former world No 1 also aimed a less-subtle dig at Tsitsipas the day after their match, tweeting: “Fact of the day. It takes Stefanos Tsitipas twice as long to go the bathroom as it takes Jeff Bazos to fly into space. Interesting.”
The New York crowd were noticeably clued up on the debate that had surfaced following the Greek’s eight-minute break on Monday, as they booed him when he returned to the court after an equally-lengthy toilet break during his victory over Mannarino.
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Tsitsipas, who fired 50 overall winners and a career-best 27 aces as he overcame Mannarino 6-3, 6-4, 6-7 (4), 6-0 under the roof on Arthur Ashe, hit back at the fans when asked about their jeering.
“I haven’t done anything wrong, so I don’t understand,” he said, after firing a career-best 27 aces to seal victory.
“The people love the sport, they come to watch tennis. I have nothing against them. I love the fans. But some people don’t understand. That’s all. They don’t understand.
“They haven’t played tennis at high level to understand how much effort and how much difficult it is to do what we are doing. Sometimes we need a short break to do what we have to do.”
During his absence from the court, Mannarino could be seen asking for balls so he could practice serving to stay warm.
The Frenchman later admitted that he thought the rules around the length of bathroom breaks needed to be changed, as under current guidelines his opponent was doing nothing wrong.
“He’s not doing anything wrong, I think the rule is wrong,” the world No 44 said.
Answering questions in French during his post-match press conference, he continued: “I read that it was his routine to take a break. In this case, it’s more unsportsmanlike conduct. So many players use this little tool to break down rhythm.”
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