A strange situation unfolded at the Cincinnati Open on Wednesday when Greek player Stefanos Tsitsipas asked the umpire to remove one of the audience members for distracting him by making buzzing sounds like a bee. The incident occurred during Tsitsipas’s match against Ben Shelton in the second round, which the Greek international won handily.
As Shelton was playing at home, the spectator was likely trying to get under Tsitsipas’s skin and distract him during the game to give Shelton an advantage. The world no 4 said as much to the umpire when he made his complaints. After hearing the buzzing, Tsitsipas assumed it was a bee that had wandered onto the court at the Western and Southern Open.
The player even tried swatting it away before realising that the source of the sound was actually in the stands. He then went to speak with the umpire, who asked him what was wrong. He told the umpire, “There's a person imitating a bee behind me. It’s a buzz right before I serve.”
Tsitsipas confronted the audience next and tried to find out the culprit. After having the impersonator pointed out to him by other members of the audience, he made his way back to the umpire. Tsitsipas then said, “It has never happened in my career. I know they're supporting the [other player]. It's the lady over there, I want her out. She needs to go... when I'm about to serve, all I hear is [bzzz].”
Tsitsipas commends Ben Shelton after 2nd round win
The Greek player beat Shelton 7-6(3), 7-6(2) to advance to the round of sixteen where he will face Polish Hubert Hurcacz. After the win over his opponent, Tsitsipas had a lot of good things to say about Shelton’s play, especially the free spirit with which the American approached the game
He said, “He hits big, can serve big, so with these kinds of players you have to be 100 per cent there. There isn’t much of a gap that you can give them. He’s still relatively young and he has that free spirit in the way he approaches his game.”