It wasn’t quite Nick Kyrgios telling Stan Wawrinka that Thanasi Kokkinakis “b***ed your girlfriend” but love lives were brought into it during a spiteful match at the Monte Carlo Masters this morning (AEDT).
Pablo Carreno Busta beat Stefano Travaglia in straight sets in the opening round to start the tournament in style but came under fire for allegedly dragging his opponent’s girlfriend into a fiery on-court spat.
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Travaglia became upset when Carreno Busta’s coach reportedly clapped before a point was over, but the Spaniard responded by accusing his rival’s girlfriend of breaking the silence by saying “si” midway through a point.
That suggestion riled the Italian up as the pair came together at the net in the second set. “Be careful when touching my girl’s name,” Travaglia said, according to tennis commentator Jose Morgado.
Tennis reporter Michael Gallo said on Twitter Travaglia also took the issue up with the umpire.
“Travaglia to the umpire: ‘You understand what he say? No respect for my girlfriend’,” Gallo tweeted. “Not sure what that meant but wow.”
Carreno Busta had the last laugh, cruising into the second round courtesy of a 7-5 7-6 win days after capturing his fifth career title at the Andalucia Open on the weekend.
Carreno Busta defeated fellow Spaniard Jaume Munar 6-1 2-6 6-4 in the final for his first title on home soil.
Big drama between Travaglia and Carreño.
Pablo’s coach clapped in the middle of the point, Stefano was mad and Pablo said that Stefano’s girlfriend also said ‘si’ sometimes before the point is over today.
The Italian was mad. ‘Be careful when touching my girls’ name’ pic.twitter.com/Lb8uupeCbe
Young guns charge ahead
Elsewhere at Monte Carlo, Stefanos Tsitsipas made a winning start as he eased past Aslan Karatsev 6-3 6-4 and into the last 16.
Greek Tsitsipas, who had been given a bye into the second round, took just one hour and 24 minutes to beat 29th-ranked Russian Karatsev.
The 22-year-old exploited a whopping 32 unforced errors from Karatsev to set up a clash with either Australian John Millman or Chile’s Cristian Garin in the next round.
Novak Djokovic will face Jannik Sinner in his second round match after the up-and-coming Italian saw off Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas in straight sets 6-3 6-4.
Teenager Sinner has risen to 22nd in the world rankings after reaching the final of the Miami Open earlier this month.
“I will definitely have a game plan,” Sinner said of what will be his first meeting with Djokovic.
“I know who is on the other side. Obviously it’s a tough match I think from my side, because I don’t know him that well. I have seen him a lot on TV, watching matches. But when you play against him in a match, it’s different. I’m looking forward to that match.”
Sinner, one of five Italians to reach the second round Tuesday in Monte Carlo, is 15-5 this year but is competing in the main draw of a Masters 1000 event for just the fourth time.
“It’s a good test for my side to see where I am, especially where I can improve,” he added. “I know where I can improve, but this kind of match can give me a lot. I just try to go there with the right mentality like in every match.”
Earlier, Daniil Medvedev pulled out of the tournament after testing positive for COVID-19. The world No. 2 tested positive, having practised with Rafael Nadal the day before.
Nadal is seeded to meet Djokovic in the final as he chases a 12th triumph in Monte Carlo, a key clay court tournament in the run up to the French Open.
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