'Not f***ing moving': Tennis world erupts over Nick Kyrgios protest

Sam Goodwin
·Sports Editor
·4-min read
Nick Kyrgios, pictured here refusing to play at the Murray River Open.
Nick Kyrgios refused to play until he got an explanation from the tournament supervisor. Image: Getty

Nick Kyrgios staged a bizarre mid-match protest during his win over fellow Aussie Harry Bourchier in an Australian Open warm-up event in Melbourne on Wednesday night.

Kyrgios was incensed after being hit with a time violation for taking too long between serves late in the second set at the Murray River Open.

‘ON A ROLL’: Tennis fans laud 'statement' Ash Barty display

‘CHEERLEADER’: Fans lose it over Rafa Nadal's 'emotional rollercoaster'

The polarising Aussie star put down his racquet and walked off to his courtside chair, telling the umpire he wasn’t playing until the issue was sorted out.

Kyrgios argued that he had already started his service motion when the serving clock struck zero, labelling the chair umpire a “smart arse” after calling for the tournament supervisor.

“I’m not playing. Get him (the supervisor) out. No, I don’t understand. I wanna talk to him,” he said.

“I’m not f***ing moving. It’s like you guys do it to just be funny. Bro, I was serving. Why’d you have to call it?”

Kyrgios claimed the chair umpire was making the situation about himself.

“Tennis is not about the umpires,” Kyrgios said.

“He's an extra to make sure all this s**t goes smoothly.

“I was in the motion of serving. Every technique is different. I wasn't bouncing the ball.

“So he’s a smarta*** and calls it? I have to go back and forth to get my towel. I was here, I was actually here serving.

“Then he says everyone’s service technique was the same.”

Kyrgios only agreed to continue playing when the supervisor assured him he wouldn't be fined, however the strange scenes delayed the match for about five minutes.

“Do I get fined for that, yes or no?” Kyrgios asked.

“I’ve lost enough money to these peanuts.”

Tennis fans erupted over the Kyrgios protest, however the majority seemed to believe Kyrgios was right to be fuming.

Nick Kyrgios overcomes dramas to advance

The issue had been brewing all match, with Kyrgios venting his anger at the chair umpire for repeatedly hurrying him whenever he walked back to grab a towel to wipe off sweat.

Bourchier saved two match points in the 12th game of the second set, but he blew his three set points in the tie break.

Kyrgios held his nerve to secure the win in 85 minutes, setting up a third-round clash with world No.25 Borna Coric at the Murray River Open.

“I just like playing by the rules,” Kyrgios said in his on-court interview after the match when asked about the time-code violation incident.

“I didn't want to play until I made sure I wasn't going to get fined, because the ATP does me pretty rough all the time, they fine me too much money.”

Nick Kyrgios, pictured here arguing with the chair umpire at the ATP 250 Murray River Open.
Nick Kyrgios argues with the chair umpire at the ATP 250 Murray River Open at Melbourne Park. (Photo by Jonathan DiMaggio/Getty Images)

When asked whether he thought he was in the service action when the time violation was called, Kyrgios was blunt.

“Yeah obviously, that's why I stopped,” he said.

Kyrgios produced his wide array of tricks during the match, including underarm serves and shots between the legs.

He was bothered at times early by his heavily-strapped left leg, but it didn't seem to affect him as the contest wore on.

with AAP

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.