Stefanos Tsitsipas lost his semifinal in Cincinnati against the German Alexander Zverev, but afterwards the Greek’s long break after the first set was the main topic of conversation.
Tsitsipas took an 8-minute break to freshen up. “I went to the dressing room to put on a new outfit,” he defended. “It wouldn’t be so nice to do that on the tennis court.”
“I just sweat more than other tennis players,” said Tsitsipas, who had to fight against the suspicions that he used the long break to consult his coach with his smartphone.
That rumor was fueled by images of his coach busy with his mobile phone during the break, but Tsitsipas laughed it all away.
“I won’t change my behavior because I feel better when I can start a new set like this.”
However, the chair umpire refused a second break after the second set. He argued that Tsitsipas had already used up his credit.
“That was not really gallant”, said the targeted Greek. “I will study the rules again, but a player can take a toilet visit after every set. Or that’s what I think.”
Opponent Alexander Zverev was visibly annoyed during the interruption.
“I like to win or lose with my racket. I will never call for a medical break if I don’t need it. I never go to the toilet if I don’t have to.”
“But some competitors use the rules to their advantage. The rules are flexible. I’m just a little frustrated because it happened to Tsitsipas at Roland Garros too.”
Here's the toilet break rule (ATP):