Reilly Opelka defends Stefanos Tsitsipas following US Open controversy

Tsitsipas found himself in an uncomfortable situation following his US Open first round match versus Andy Murray.

by Dzevad Mesic
Reilly Opelka defends Stefanos Tsitsipas following US Open controversy

World No. 24 Reilly Opelka has come to the defence of third-ranked Stefanos Tsitsipas. Tsitsipas left the court for seven minutes after the fourth set of his first round match and Andy Murray was absolutely irate that the Greek took such a lengthy bathroom break.

When Tsitsipas returned, he broke Murray in the opening game of the fifth set and ended up claiming a 2-6 7-6 (7) 3-6 6-3 6-4 win. At the Cincinnati Masters, Tsitsipas did the same against Alexander Zverev and the German accused him of leaving the court with his phone and texting his coach.

"You know, I don't know Tsitsipas. I don't know his situation. I doubt he's getting coached. I highly doubt it. Today, you know, I couldn't even take my bag in to change. I'm like, 'Guys, my clothes and shoes are in there' You can come stand in here with me if you want.

I don't like being coached on court, that stance. I don't think he would have on-court coaching at all, but I strictly go to change because it's humid," Opelka said, per Tennis Panorama News. "If people don't understand that, then clearly they have never spent a day in the life of a professional athlete or come close to it."

Murray lost his respect for Tsitsipas

"But, yeah, it can't be coincidence that it's happening at those moments.

I don't believe it was causing him any issue at all. The match went on for another two and a bit hours after that or something. He was fine, moving great I thought," Murray said in his post-match press conference. "Yeah, it's just disappointing because I thought it influenced the outcome of the match.

I'm not saying I necessarily win that match, for sure, but it had influence on what was happening after those two breaks. "I rate him a lot. I think he is a brilliant player. I think he is great for the game. But I have zero time for that stuff all, and I lost respect for him."

Reilly Opelka Stefanos Tsitsipas Andy Murray