Australian Open | Everything could have been different. Lehečka was close to advancing, Tsitsipas was threatened with disqualification

Australian Open |  Everything could have been different.  Lehečka was close to advancing, Tsitsipas was threatened with disqualification

The performance of the Czech tennis player in the match was not bad at all, but it was not enough to win. Even so, Lehečka performed a number of punches that deserved applause. One such came in the third set at 3:4 and 15:30 from the Czech’s point of view. His winning forehand bounced off the wall, and an angry Tsitsipas swung at the ball and fired it into the barrier again.

But at that moment, the catcher was already running towards him and was almost hit by the ball. If that happened, the Greek would probably be disqualified. Just like what happened, for example, to Novak Djokovic at the US Open in 2020, who hit the linesman with the ball.

“You have to be careful when you hit the ball out of bounds. I speak from experience,” said Eurosport pundit and former player Tim Henman, who was disqualified from Wimbledon in 1995 after hitting a ball collector. “He was extremely lucky. If he had hit it, he could have gone straight to the net to congratulate his opponent on progressing. It was that’s dangerous,” responded former American tennis player Jim Courier.

However, Tsitsipas was calm. “I saw that picker, of course I wasn’t aiming at him. I think he was still quite far away, I would have to miss a lot to hit him. But I shouldn’t have done it, I’m not proud of myself, but frustration overcame me,” said the 24-year-old player, who will challenge the Russian Karen Khachanov in the semi-finals of the Australian Open, with whom he has a positive balance of five wins and one defeat.

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