ATP Acapulco: Alexander Zverev officially excluded from the tournament after his stroke

Has fatigue got the better of Alexander Zverev’s nerves? After winning the latest match in history, the German repeatedly hit the referee’s chair with his racquet after a doubles loss on Tuesday at the ATP tournament in Acapulco. The 24-year-old came off his feet after losing in a super tie-break with Brazilian Marcelo Melo against Britain’s Lloyd Glasspool and Finland’s Harri Heliövaara 6-2, 4-6, 10-6.

In the video footage, Zverev is seen hitting the referee’s chair three times, sitting down and then getting up to insult the official and give a final racquet kick. This gesture and these remarks are liable to fines and sanctions according to the disciplinary code of the ATP. And they quickly fell, since the 3rd in the world was excluded by the tournament organizers due to a “unsportsmanlike behavior‘.

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Additionally, if the First Vice President, Rules and Competitions, determines that the violation was particularly detrimental to the proper conduct of the tournament or detrimental to the integrity of the sport, he may consider additional sanctions. (fines or suspensions)”, specifies the ATP in this disciplinary code. Alexander Zverev was due to play his second singles round on Wednesday against his compatriot Peter Gojowczyk.

McEnroe or Djokovic before him

Player suspensions for bad behavior are very rare in professional tennis. A few big names have suffered this fate during a match, however: American John McEnroe was disqualified at the 1990 Australian Open for insulting the referee and Australian Nick Kyrgios in Rome in 2019 for throwing a chair at the court.

Serbian Novak Djokovic was ejected from the court at the US Open 2020 for unintentionally hitting a ball in the direction of a linesman. Canadian Denis Shapovalov had experienced a similar misadventure when his ball hurt the eye of French chair umpire Arnaud Gabas in 2017 in the Davis Cup. As for the Argentinian David Nalbandian, he had been deprived of the end of the final of the Queen’s 2012, for having involuntarily injured a linesman. Zverev is also the subject of an investigation opened by the ATP into allegations of domestic violence made against him by his ex-partner.

In June 2020, he was also criticized for partying in a bar full of people, when he promised to isolate himself for 14 days after participating in the Adria Tour, an exhibition tournament with an audience and without distancing. organized by Novak Djokovic during which several players including the world No.1 had been contaminated with Covid-19. This edition of the Acapulco tournament was the scene of another unusual incident on Tuesday night: John Millman had to give up after being shot in the eye.

The Australian preferred to smile by posting a photo on his Instagram account where we see him with a plaster on the eye touched involuntarily and accompanied by the mention: “Always watch the ball“.

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