Greek Young Gun Beats Federer After On-Court Controversy
It had been a dream come true for young gun Stefanos Tsitsipas to face his idol on Rod Laver Arena.
“I’m the happiest man on Earth right now,” Tsitsipas said, after defeating the Swiss master in a four-set battle.
“I can’t describe it.”
Tsitsipas is 20 years old, and Federer 37, making them the youngest and oldest left in the draw.
After losing the first set, Tsitsipas took out the match 6-7 (11-13), 7-6 (7-3), 7-5, 7-6 to continue his magical run at Melbourne Park.
Both players traded stunning winners throughout the match, but Federer was made to pay the price for an unusually high 55 unforced errors.
Rising to the occasion, the Greek prodigy saved 12 break points to hold service for the match and deny Federer an opening.
The match had its fair share of controversy. The crowd booed Tsitsipas as he returned to the court for 'unfair' tactics after he called a trainer just before a serve in the fourth set, which left Federer to complain to the umpire.
Tsitsipas called the trainer 10 minutes before receiving treatment and was also accused of taking too long to walk back onto the court.
But Federer remained as humble as ever.
“I lost to a better player who was playing very well tonight,” he said post-match.
“Hung in there, gave himself changes at some point, stayed calm, especially for younger guys. Credit to him for taking care of that.”
The 14th seed will face Spain’s Robert Bautista Agut in the quarter final and he could meet Rafael Nadal in the final four.
Federer appeared to be in tears as he waved to fans, exiting the court -- what was the scene of so many triumphs -- possibly for the final time.
Featured image: AAP