LONDON (REUTERS) – Australian maverick Nick Kyrgios accused a line judge of “rigging” his delayed first-round match against Roberto Carballes Baena at the Queen’s Club Championships on Thursday (June 20).
Kyrgios won 7-6(4) 6-3 to set up a second-round clash with Canadian youngster Felix Auger-Aliassime later in the day but once again it was his behaviour that provided the talking point as he was handed a code violation.
The 24-year-old lost his cool and rounded on umpire Fergus Murphy after missing a set point in the first set when he believed his Spanish opponent’s serve had been out.
“The ball was this far out (holding hands about a foot apart), no joke. No joke. What are you doing? It’s so far long. What are you doing? What are you actually doing up there?” Kyrgios was heard to say.
“Bro, it’s taking the p***.
“I refuse to play.”
Kyrgios was then given a code violation for unsportsmanlike behaviour before taking a dislike to umpire Murphy’s headgear.
“It’s a joke, man. It’s a serious joke. Like your hat looks ridiculous, also. It’s not even sunny.”
Following another point, Kyrgios continued to berate the officials and threatened to walk off court.
“The ball was this far out on the second serve. I’m going. I’m not going to give 100 per cent when I’ve got a linesman rigging the game, I don’t want to play.”
“Be careful, Nick, be careful what you’re saying,” Murphy said, only to be told: “I’m not talking to you. Don’t talk to me. Don’t talk to me.”
Kyrgios called the officials a “disgrace” during the tiebreak and then demanded to speak to the tournament supervisor after taking the opening set.
Three games later, when the supervisor arrived, Kyrgios explained his view of events.
“Twenty people over there are saying it was way out. Go and ask them yourself. They’re not going to lie to you, they’ve got no reason to,” he said.
“An 80mph second serve. You actually can’t be that bad… That s*** can’t happen. Know what I mean?”
Controversy has followed Kyrgios around throughout his career and he recently rocked the boat with uncomplimentary comments about world number one Novak Djokovic and 18-times Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal in a video posted on social media.
He pulled out of the French Open because of illness shortly after saying the tournament “sucked”.
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