Former French Open winner Adriano Panatta has hit out at Team World players Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock for their aggressiveness and “mean” behavior against Team Europe’s Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal during the recently concluded Laver Cup competition in London.
Federer had announced that the Laver Cup would be his last professional tournament before retiring and it led to a massive emotional farewell during the event with player carrying him atop their shoulders, and others offering lavish praise. However, it was not all hunky dory as Federer and Nadal went down to Tiafoe and Sock in their doubles match despite putting up a close fight.
Tiafoe and Sock, who are known for their aggressive and attacking brand of tennis, shouted ‘come on’ several times during the encounter, apparently even signaling or facing towards their opponents during some of those occasions.
“They were mean. These two Americans were punching with all their might in the face of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. It was disrespectful and they only did it because they couldn’t do anything else. They are troglodytes of tennis. They were rude to two tennis players, champions, who made the history of this sport,” said Panatta.
Frances Tiafoe refused to apologize to Roger Federer
After the match, Tiafoe was asked by reporters in the presser whether he would apologize to Federer given it was an emotional moment for him as it is.
To this, the American had replied that Federer himself “a lot to apologize after the last 24 years, beating everybody.”
“He’s a class act. Happy to know him, happy to call him friend, happy to call him a colleague, and best wishes in his second act. But I will not apologize,” Tiafoe added.
Team World won the Laver Cup for the first time in the competition’s five-edition history and Tiafoe played a key role in that victory.
Frances Tiafoe’s offensive slurs at the Laver Cup
During Tiafoe’s last match at the Laver Cup, he was continuously heard making disparaging remarks to get on top of the head of his opponent, Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Tennis fans on social media called out Tiafoe’s disrespectful, racist, and unsportsmanlike comments and also questioned the ATP whether they’ll let these remarks slide away without any action or not.
However, some also suggested that Tsitsipas should work on not getting carried away by such remarks.