"He tried to play mind games with me": Stefanos Tsitsipas opens up on prior feud with Daniil Medvedev started in 2018

Thursday, 09 May 2024 at 17:15
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Stefanos Tsitsipas and Daniil Medvedev have never hugely seen eye-to-eye and have had a feud previously which seems to now be quashed. Speaking as part of an interview with Sport Express, he explained why they fell out.
It all stems back to an incident around six years ago which saw Medvedev demand Tsitsipas apologise for hitting the net then still winning the point and not pointing it out. For Tsitsipas, he sees why this happened now in hindsight but get caught up in the moment.
“I won’t say that we talk a lot, but the relationship is better than it was years ago. We both put what was happening behind us. At one time in Miami, during our game, in 2018, I think, a strange incident happened. When I hit, I hit the net and after three more hits I won that rally. Daniel wanted me to apologize. I was very angry when he asked for this, because it is my business whether to apologize or not. At the same time, I simply forgot about it because it was a long rally and I was focused on the ball," he said to Sport Express as translated from Russian.
"This created tension at the end of the game that I lost. Although he believed that he should have won, and thought that this was influenced precisely by his demand to apologize. He tried to play “mind games” with me, and I was still very young and immature compared to today. Now, faced with a similar situation, I would behave completely differently. And then, having just made his debut on the tour, he was very angry in a sporting way and was turned on even by things that did not require such a reaction. And after the game I told him bad things at the net, which I now regret. But I had a feeling that he wanted to create problems during the game. By that time, I had hardly encountered anything like this and found it very toxic on his part."
But he still wouldn't have a glass of wine with him despite the feud ending. "I still don’t think so, haha. We are not yet at that level of relationship."
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Stefanos Tsitsipas still wouldn't go for a glass of wine with Medvedev despite their differences being a thing of the past.

Great relationship with Rublev

After tackling previous issues, Tsitsipas also lauded Andrey Rublev as well as Karen Khachanov as other Russian players who he is friends with and respects.
"I think Andrey Rublev is a great person, I really love his tennis and his human qualities. He brings very good values ​​on and off the court. I admire him, he is generous and just a wonderful person. And cheerful, which cannot be said about all tennis players.
"Karen Khachanov is also a wonderful and friendly guy, he always says hello, we have never had any problems. I respect them all! Including Daniil - for what he did for tennis. It was just unlucky that we had such friction over one episode. I guess I was expecting an apology after he started something like that. And in this case he himself was ready to ask for forgiveness. But they were not heard. Now we pretend it never happened.
"One day two years ago I said something unpleasant to Rublev, which I also really regret. And here I thought it was important to go up to Andrey a week later and apologize, explain that I didn’t want to say this, but I was very angry after the game and for some reason I took out this anger on my opponent, which was wrong. Told him: “I was wrong, and what I said has nothing to do with what I really think.” We explained ourselves and moved on. I know those words were my mistake. I think that other people should admit their mistakes. Such is life that it cannot do without them."

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