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Originally published on 01/06/17 00:00

Kyrgios has a meltdown

It was déjà vu on Court 3 today as in classic-Kyrgios-style, the Aussie lost his cool.

In the last set, Kyrgios stood at the baseline and smashed his racket on the ground, breaking the frame. He then walked over to his seat and proceeded to smash the broken racket some more, this time against a water cooler box next to him. Footage showed four teenagers walking behind the player as he did so – commentators were quick to express their disapproval at such a poor example of behaviour from the professional athlete.

Despite taking the first set, the No.18 seed was defeated 5-7 6-4 6-1 6-2 by Kevin Anderson.

It's fair to say Kyrgios isn't the biggest fan of the red dirt. He said: “What don't I like about clay? I don't really like running. That's one thing. So when the rally gets pretty long I tend to just go for a low-percentage shot. I also don't like how my shoes get dirty. When I'm back home I don't really train that much on clay because it makes my car dirty, too."

Earlier in 2017, Kyrgios was fined more than $7,000 for his Australian Open meltdown, also in the second round of the tournament. Swiftly after the tournament, Kyrgios’ racket manufacturer, Yonex, started fining its players for smashes. The manufacturer introduced a clause entitling them to strip a chunk out of their client’s retainer for every racket smashed.

 

Brit Watch

Both Andy Murray and Kyle Edmund saw off their opponents to book their places in the third round of Roland Garros.

Murray looked uncomfortable on Court Suzanne Lenglen and the four-setter took a draining three hours and 35 minutes including two tie-breaks. The final result: 6-7(3) 6-2 6-2 7-6(3).

At one point a crying baby in the crowd caused Murray to stutter on a serve but, a dad himself, he waited patiently for the little one to settle down.

In stark contrast, Edmund breezed through, beating Renzo Olivo 7-5 6-3 6-1. The 22-year-old has improved his year-end ranking in four straight seasons – in 2013 his year-end ranking was No.376 compared to 2016 when he finished at No. 45. With gains like these, the Johannesburg-born Brit could be the one to watch as we approach the halfway mark at the French Open.  

 

 

True sportsmanship

“I don’t feel good enough after this sad situation,” explained a compassionate Del Potro after his opponent Nicolas Almagro retired from the second round match due to a left knee injury. After just 90 minutes of play, and with the match level at one set-all, Almagro collapsed in agony at the baseline, unable to return Del Potro’s serve. The Argentine was quick to rush over and console his opponent, walking him to his courtside chair.

"I wish a good recovery to Nico,” he said. “Hopefully he can feel better very, very soon, because he's a great player and we love to have him on tour. Of course, it's not easy for me when you have a friend on the other side of the court showing an injury or crying. It was really a bad moment for both, but I wish all the best to him.

"I tried to find good words for that moment. I said to him, 'Try to be calm’. Tennis is important, but health matters more than tennis in this case.”

It transpired that Del Potro was injured himself with a groin strain, but he assured everyone after the match that it was not a source of concern for his match against Andy Murray, who he will face in the third round.

 

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