MELBOURNE: Feisty Canadian Denis Shapovalov was sent packing from the Australian Open in the first round Monday after an epic row with the umpire for throwing his racquet in frustration.
The world number 13 was beaten 6-3, 7-6 (9/7), 6-1, 7-6 (7/3) by Hungarian Marton Fucsovics in a big upset on day one of the first Grand Slam of the year.
Considered one of the new generation who could challenge the Big Three of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, the 20-year-old lost the plot after being crushed in the third set.
The umpire warned him for throwing down his racquet and it didn’t go down well with the temperamental Canadian.
“I’m not breaking any rules,” he shouted at the official. “It’s my racquet I can do whatever the hell I want with it.”
“What are you talking about, I didn’t break it,” he added.
“If I broke it, give me a code, 100 percent. I didn’t break my racquet. It was a terrible call, do your job.”
Shapovalov, who crashed out of the Auckland Classic last week to a qualifier, never really got going with his emotions getting the better of him.
It was a setback for the Canadian, who enjoyed a strong finish to a topsy-turvy 2019 season which featured his maiden ATP title in Stockholm. He also made the Paris Masters final, losing to Djokovic.
World number 67 Fucsovics, who was bundled out in the second round at Melbourne Park last year, said he played some of his best tennis.
“I was hitting the ball really well, I like it here. I played some of my best tennis today. Everything was working,” he said.