Kyrgios and Tsitsipas, from friends to foes

London, Jul 3 (EFE).- A heated Wimbledon third-round match proved to be the turning point in the relationship between Nick Kyrgios and Stefanos Tsitsipas, who once were friends.

The players who shared a photo of them during June’s Halle Open were part of a match that was so intense that the BBC director opted to skip the handshake at the net for fear of what might happen.

“It’s constant bullying, that’s what he does,” Greece’s Tsitsipas said at a press conference following his Saturday’s 7-6, 4-6, 3-6, 6-7 defeat to the Australian.

“He bullies the opponents. He was probably a bully at school himself. I don’t like bullies,” the fourth-seed added. “He has some good traits in his character, as well. But he also has a very evil side to him.”

His remarks came after Kyrgios asked for line judges to be changed, due to errors in calling the shots and demanded Tsitsipas to be defaulted after hitting a ball into the crowd.

In return, Tsitsipas admittedly aimed for his opponent’s body when given the chance: “I missed by a lot.”

“This needs to stop. It’s not okay. Someone needs to sit down with him and talk,” he added.

The Australian, meanwhile, said “I’m not sure how I bullied him. He was the one hitting balls at me, he was the one that hit a spectator, he was the one that smacked it out of the stadium.”

Nonetheless, both players have been involved in controversies with Kyrgios being disqualified, fined and away from the court for several weeks, while Tsitsipas took extended toilet breaks to alter the rhythm of the match, and broke an on-court coaching ban.

Both move well in these mudflats. But while Kyrgios knew how to handle himself this Saturday, Tsitsipas lost his nerve. And the match.

“He’s soft to come in here and say I bullied him. We’re not cut from the same cloth. If he’s affected by that, then that’s what’s holding him back,” Kyrgios added. EFE


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