Nick Kyrgios told to 'play f*****g tennis' by opponent after berating chair umpire

2019 US Open - Day 2

To the surprise of few, Australian tennis star Nick Kyrgios has already made his mark on the US Open – both on and off the court.

The world number 30 flattened Steve Johnson in their first-round match in the early hours of Wednesday morning, disposing of the American in straight sets 6-3, 7-6, 6-4.

You might assume that such a one-sided battle at the end of a long day of tennis might struggle to hold the interest of weary fans in New York’s Louis Armstrong Stadium.

But Nick Kyrgios, who received a £102,000 fine for smashing two rackets after an altercation with umpire Fergus Murphy at last month’s Cincinnati Masters, has never been one to leave audiences bored.

And in this latest match, he once again kept his crowd awake with powerful tennis and foul-mouthed antics on the sidelines.

The most notable flashpoint came towards the end of the second set, when Kyrgios became distracted by a woman returning to her seat as he served with the score 4-4.

Annoyed, Kyrgios wasted no time in berating British umpire James Keothavong for his failure to intervene – an exchange which earned the Aussie a code violation for an audible obscenity.

Kyrgios triumphed in the following game, but continued his heated debate with the umpire with the set at 5-4. And across the court, Johnson’s temper was also rising.

While the pair changed ends, Johnson publicly called out his opponent - "do you want to play f*****g tennis or host a s**t show?".

Fortunately for those behind Kyrgios, the Australian decided to bite his tongue this time, and instead, channelled his anger into his tennis. He dominated the rest of the match, and will proceed to face Antione Hoang in the second round.

Reflecting on the second set after the match, Kyrgios said: "It was pretty clean. I knew it was an important set. If he got that set the match could have been different and we'd still be playing right now."

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