Stefanos Tsitsipas left in hysterics trying to explain unexpected umpire altercation

Stefanos Tsitsipas says his ATP Finals win was 'outstanding'

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Stefanos Tsitsipas was left dumbfounded when he received a violation for coaching during his four-set win over Benoit Paire on Saturday. The world No 4 was told he had already been warned, but later said he “didn’t know” what had happened as he wasn’t facing his team box at the time.

Tsitsipas faced a resurgent Paire in Saturday’s third round, coming through the four-set battle 6-3 7-5 6-7(2) 6-4.

The Greek had been in doubt to compete in the Australian Open after picking up an elbow injury that ended his 2021 season at the ATP Finals, and also hindered him during the recent ATP Cup.

It seems he has managed to recover and turn things around in Melbourne, and will next face Taylor Fritz in the round-of-16.

But his win wasn’t without some controversy, as the world No 4 received a coaching violation while serving at 3-4 in the second set.

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Explaining why he had received the violation, chair umpire Mariana Veljovic explained she had already warned him about the issue.

“I told you before I’m going to consider it coaching,” she told Tsitsipas.

“I did tell you that, after the first set remember?”

The former semi-finalist in Melbourne seemed to take it well, laughing on the court, and latered opened up on the incident in his post-match press conference.

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Asked what happened, Tsitsipas smiled as he admitted: “I have no idea.”

The world No 4, who has been known to receive coaching violations more often than most during his matches, admitted this one came as a surprise.

“I was laughing because it was funny because of the position of the court that I was at,” he continued, explaining his on-court reaction.

“I was really far away from my coach, and with my back facing the other way, so I was just laughing because I don’t know where that came from. It was completely unexpected.”

Tsitsipas will next face Taylor Fritz in the fourth round on Monday, with the in-form American making it to his first-ever second week at a Major.

Previewing the match-up, the 23-year-old said: “Big server, big hitter. He has weapons. I have played him before. I will really have to stay consistent and keep pushing him back.

“I feel like it’s going to be really important to stay consistent with my shots and my serve and remain focused when I am going to be given some opportunities in that match. You know, it will really be all about staying in the present and trying to come up with some creative stuff when there is going to be big hitting from both sides.”

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