Former world No. 37 Nicolas Mahut has come to the defence of Stefanos Tsitsipas following the criticism the Greek has received at the US Open. Tsitsipas took a seven-minute long bathroom breaks after his US Open first round clash against Andy Murray and also did the same in the second round against Adrian Mannarino.
Murray was irate with Tsitsipas, accusing the Greek of bad sportsmanship and saying he lost respect for him. World No. 4 Alexander Zverev also criticised Tsitsipas as he said that the bathroom is a "magical place" for the Greek.
“We end up with the crowd against him despite him putting on an incredible show. Against Murray the match was crazy. Versus. Alcaraz it was extraordinary. And after a tournament like that we only talk about breaks. It’s a shame," Mahut said.
Tsitsipas explained his lengthy bathroom breaks
"I said that we should both (Andy and me) discuss it, the two of us, because I followed the rules. I didn’t break anything, any rules. I think there is rule for that which really doesn’t specify the time that you have to spend in the bathroom.
It is important to take it if you have to. First of all, you carry less weight on you with all the sweat. You feel rejuvenated, you feel fresh, and you don’t have all the sweat bothering you and coming in your face, on your fingers, everywhere all over your body.
It makes you feel better," Tsitsipas said. “For me it is important to take that break. For someone else probably not. And everyone has his own time. I try and be as quick as I can. Sometimes I just need a bit more time.
That’s all. If I break a rule, sure, I’m guilty. I agree, I’m not doing something right. If I’m staying within the guidelines, then what’s the issue?”