Russia’s Daniil Medvedev blew his top in Sydney tonight, smashing the umpire’s chair twice before claiming victory against Argentina in the ATP Cup quarter-finals.
Medvedev received a warning for unsportsmanlike behaviour after arguing with world no.13 Diego Schwartzman during a changeover, with umpire Mohamed Lahyani jumping from his chair to separate the pair.
Medvedev argued a call during the second set, smashing the chair twice with his racquet before Lahyani issued the warning and a point penalty for the meltdown.
“I didn’t have anything near me to hit other than the chair,” Medvedev said afterwards.
Medvedev went on to defeat Schwartzman 6-4 4-6 6-3 in a fiesty contest to give Russia a 2-0 lead over Argentina.
It was not the first time Medvedev has lost his cool on court. He was hot water at Wimbledon for throwing coins at the umpire’s chair, and also gave the middle finger to the US Open crowd in September on his way to the final.
Medvedev blamed his behaviour on jet lag after travelling from Perth to Sydney for the quarter-finals, with the team’s flight diverted to Melbourne because of poor weather.
“To be honest, I felt like shit,” he said. “It was tough … at a few points in the match, I thought, OK I cannot do anything I am so tired physically, Diego was playing amazing. I knew I just had to continue to try to fight.”
He did not expect to receive further punishment or a fine for his actions, but said a fine normally comes after a point penalty is given.
“It’s not for me to decide, I don’t know what the ATP will decide … nothing happened to the chair, nothing happened to anybody, nothing even happened to my racquet,” he said.
Marat Safin’s side will face either Serbia, with world No. 2 Novak Djokovic, or Canada in the semi-finals, with the two nations to contest their quarter-final on Friday.