The boisterous and often raucous support from the Australian Open crowd for home-favourites Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis has been slammed after tension boiled over during their doubles victory on Tuesday.
Kyrgios and Kokkinakis progressed through to the Australian Open men's doubles semi-finals after a hell-raising quarter-final victory.
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The Aussie's duo's wildly popular run through the doubles bracket continued in front of possibly the most raucous crowd yet at Melbourne Park, claiming a 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 win over Michael Venus and Tim Peütz.
Kyrgios and Kokkinakis have rejuvenated the nation's thirst for doubles action and the enthusiasm has boiled over with members of the crowd yelling 'siu' - Cristiano Ronaldo's celebration - between points at all stages of the match.
Members of the crowd also yelled out in the middle of Venus' service action and during the point in the chaotic scenes.
At one stage, Kyrgios was warned for a time violation for taking too long between serves.
Venus erupted and called for the chair umpire to take action.
However, Venus then appeared to mock Kyrgios and tossed the ball up a number of times before his serve.
This sparked an absolutely fierce reaction from the crowd.
Kyrgios complained to the chair umpire, before smashing his racquet following the point.
The Aussie maverick created a vociferous reaction inside Kia Arena, however many spectators around the world thought the actions of the crowd crossed the line.
This was no more evident than when members of the crowd attempted to put Venus off during his serve.
“This is unprecedented,” Commentator Sam Groth said on Chanel Nine.
“Have you ever seen a tennis match go this way? I haven’t. Kyrgios and Venus are completely at each other right now here in the third set.”
Fans were quick to debate whether the crowd crossed the line, or if the electric atmosphere was good for tennis.
Nick Kyrgios has done a lot of crazy shit, but making people care about doubles tennis might just be the craziest #AusOpen
— Vince Rugari (@VinceRugari) January 25, 2022
Yo the crowd watching Kyrgios and Kokkinakis is absolutely wild they're hitting the SIIIUUUU after every point 😂😭#AusOpen
— JAKE BUCKLEY 🇦🇺 (@TheMasterBucks) January 25, 2022
Aus tennis crowd (Kyrgios) currently booing/siuing the opposition during his ball toss & when he faults… Embarrassing & a massive lack of respect shown. Be better #AustralianOpen
— Adam Pustetto (@adampustetto) January 25, 2022
Incredible day at the #AusOpen yesterday!
The Kyrgios/Kokkinakis doubles match was one of the most insane sporting events I’ve been to.
Good or bad for tennis? I’ll tell you one thing: It was more entertaining than the 1st set of Barty’s QF, in front of a corporate, quiet crowd pic.twitter.com/vj7lIZxLby
— Luke Grant (@LukeGrant7) January 25, 2022
Disgraceful, ignorant & arrogant describe the behaviour of Kyrgios and his millennial crowd
Reminiscent of the US Open partisan crowds, the rude booing continually interrupted the overseas pairing
Kyrgios encouraged the crowd
Shame Kyrgios Shame
Retire for the good of the game pic.twitter.com/HleDeQOrmA
— AustralianPolitics (@NoSpinPolitics) January 25, 2022
— Jeremy Foster (@Foster_112) January 25, 2022
Tennis fans are genuinely so sad, nothing wrong with the atmosphere in that game. That’s literally the definition of Aussie spirit. Kokkinakis and Kyrgios used the crowd so well. #AusOpen
— Vas (@V_Cotis) January 25, 2022
Two things can be true at once:
Kyrgios & Kokkinakis are something the likes of the doubles tennis establishment haven’t seen before, and frankly needs
However this crowd is feral and if I was the chair I think I’d be ejecting people by now. #AusOpen
— Jeremy (@MrBangaRanga) January 25, 2022
This crowd of Kokkinakis & Kyrgios is acting like no crowd I've ever seen before in all the decades of watching my beloved sport. And you know what... if tennis wants to move on from being as white, dull & exclusive as the Tennis Australia board, it needs to be embraced. #ausopen
— Dale Roberts (@ozdale) January 25, 2022
Nick Kyrgios' post-match interview
Kyrgios and Kokkinakis have certainly done well to garner tennis fans' attention back on doubles.
Speaking after the match, both Kyrgios and Kokkinakis praised their fans and asked for more from the devoted and spirited that attend the semi-final.
"I'm not finished, I want to win this f***ing thing to be honest bro," Kyrgios said on Channel 9 after the match.
"It's been incredible, I think that was the toughest pair we've played, they brought some serious tennis today, it wasn't easy.
"As long as I'm playing this sport and playing in Australia, you sure will have a show."
Kokkinakis was in agreement, egging the crowd on the bring more noise in their semi-final.
"It wouldn't be a doubles match with us if there wasn't any controversy, everyone seems to have a problem," he quipped.
"Keep rustling some feathers guys, I don't mind it if I'm honest."
Kokkinakis later told the crowd to 'sink p**s and come here' when asked where the semi-final should be held.
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