On Friday evening, Daniil Medvedev lost his cool, before losing the semi-final to Dominic Thiem at the US Open.
The Russian, who had a love-hate relationship with the New York crowd during his stellar run to the finals in 2019, got into an argument with the chair umpire over a challenge. While serving at 2-3 in the opening set, Medvedev wanted to challenge his own serve, which he thought was a fault but was not called.
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The chair umpire, Damien Dumusois, disallowed the challenge saying that Medvedev had asked for it too late, after he had already hit his serve plus one shot. Even as he heatedly discussed it with the umpire, Medvedev crossed over to Thiem’s side of the court to see the ball mark.
Dumusois called it a violation.
An angry Medvedev, who had got into trouble last year for sneakily showing the middle finger to the crowd, then marched to a group of officials, including Grand Slam supervisor Wayne McKewen, to plead his case.
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“It’s a joke US Open,” he was heard saying to McKewen. “US Open is a joke, right? What did I do to get a code violation?”
“Oh yeah, I think I killed someone, right?” he carried on sarcastically. “My apologies. My sincere apologies to US Open for crossing the net. Oh my God. My sincere apologies ref. It’s okay? It’s okay? Sorry, sorry. You guys sit near the court all the time, you don’t do anything. You don’t do anything.”
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Medvedev lost the game and eventually went down 6-2, 7-6 (7), 7-6 (5) to Thiem.
After the match, he defended himself but agreed that he should have kept his cool at the time.
“Yeah, I was just really angry,” said the 24-year-old. “Of course, there was no reason to talk to him. But what surprises me sometimes in tennis is, okay, the supervisor is always there in case, let’s say, for example, a default. He steps up, calls a default. It’s not the decision of an umpire.
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“For example, talking about my code violation today, I mean, what did I do? Did I hurt someone? Did I say something rude? I didn’t do anything. I get a code. I’m like, Supervisor, do something. Why are you sitting here?
“I still don’t know the answer to this question. Of course, there was no reason to get angry on this.”