Following a 3-set win over Dominic Thiem in his opening match at the ATP Finals in London yesterday, Novak Djokovic and a local journalist got into it. Mirror reporter Neil McLeman went after Djokovic for hitting the ball into the crowd after dropping a tough first set to the Austrian. Djokovic didn’t take kindly to the inquisition from Mcleman.
Q. Back to the end of the first set, we saw you similarly venting your frustration at Roland Garros, throwing your racquet. Does it concern you one day that will cost you dearly? If it hit someone…
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: You guys are unbelievable.
Q. Why is it unbelievable?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Because you’re always picking these kind of things.
Q. If you keep doing these things…
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I keep doing these things? Why don’t you get suspended then?
Q. You were close, weren’t you?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I’m close? I’m still not suspended, so if I’m not close, I’m not close.
Q. If that ball had hit a spectator, it could have been serious.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It could have been, yes. It could have snowed in O2 arena, as well, but it didn’t.
Q. You’re not concerned about your mindset?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I’m the only player that shows his frustration on the court? That’s what you are saying?
Q. You’re one of the top-ranked players in the world.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: So?
Q. You are showing this frustration. I’m asking you, do you think it’s an issue for you?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It is not an issue for me. It’s not the first time I did it.
— Guardian sport (@guardian_sport) November 14, 2016
Djokovic actions didn’t appear to be that egregious, though it did produce a warning from the chair umpire Bernardes. And how much tennis does this reporter cover anyway?
Some came to his defense:
Unbelievable arrogance from Djokovic refusing to apologise for behaviour and perfectly reasonable line of questioning by @NeilMcLeman
— Ian Baker (@ianbakersport) November 13, 2016
The side note is Djokovic is battling Andy Murray for the No. 1 ranking, so might there be some extra bias to take a shot at Novak?
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