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15 Aug, 2022 10:15

Medvedev addresses fan confrontation (VIDEO)

A heckler in Montreal called the Russian tennis world number one a 'loser' after Kyrgios defeated him
Medvedev addresses fan confrontation (VIDEO)

World tennis number one Daniil Medvedev has commented on an incident that saw him confront an abusive fan in Montreal who called the Russian a 'loser' after he was defeated by Nick Kyrgios.

The fracas occurred after Medvedev had lost his round of 32 clash against Kyrgios 6-7 6-4 6-2 at the Montreal Masters on Wednesday last week.

As a clip that emerged on TikTok in the following days showed, Medvedev was peacefully making his way out of the Stade IGA with his bag in tow but then turned round when hearing someone call him a 'loser' and immediately confronted the heckler as security swarmed around the pair. 

Medvedev asked: "What did you say?" and insisted he was "super calm" as the conversation heated up, making it clear that he didn't like the man's choice of words or the lack of eye contact from his detractor who he told: "Don't look down" before walking off and pointing back.

Ahead of the Cincinnati Masters this week, Medvedev, 26, explained the exchange to the media.

"If someone mocks me, I will respond," Medvedev vowed. 

"It would be bad to let people shout bad things at me and just keep walking.

"I will ask what his problem is."

Medvedev also suggested that a parent of the person involved was also at fault.

"The father of the guy said something to me also - I say educate your kid. I won't let people mock me."

Medvedev added that the abuse was unusual to face in person as it usually comes online.  

"This is one of the first times it's happened to me, it doesn't really happen a lot. On social media (criticism and insults) are a bit out of control," said the Russian. 

As a figure who has had his fair share of trouble with hecklers, and even had one thrown out of his Wimbledon final loss to Novak Djokovic this summer, Kyrgios rushed to defend Medvedev on Twitter when sharing the clip.

"Disgusting behavior," Kyrgios balked. "This is the best we have in the sport, fans need to show some respect."

Kyrgios then received his own abuse for the post, with some users telling him he behaves "way worse".

"Your swearing is often vulgar, you show violent tendencies with racquet smashing and a whole lot worse in front of children watching. I’m a fan of all tennis players and what they bring to the court but respect is earned and goes both ways," another party remarked.

Kyrgios calling Medvedev the best in tennis is of course a nod to the Moscow native's ATP number one ranking spot. 

Going into the Cincinnati Masters, Medvedev will enjoy another week as top dog and needs at least two wins at the tournament, also known as the Western & Southern Open, to guarantee the standing through the defense of his US Open crown at Flushing Meadows at the end of the month.

His lead is now slim, however, with just 125 ranking points separating his tally (6,885) and number two Alexander Zverev's (6,760). 

In Cincinnati, Medvedev could put the Montreal incident behind him by meeting and defeating Kyrgios in the quarter-finals, though there are no hard feelings between the pair as communicated by Kyrgios fighting his foe's corner. 

While Zverev will not make the Western & Southern Open and has withdrawn, Medvedev faces Botic van de Zandschulp in the round of 32 on Tuesday.