Flushing, Queens—— A fan was ejected from a U.S. Open tennis match early Tuesday morning after German player Alexander Zverev complained that the man had used language related to Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime.
The 12th-seeded Zverev was leading 2-2 in the fourth set against sixth-seeded Janik Sinner when he suddenly walked up to referee James Kortavon and pointed at fans sitting at the back of the court. referee.
“He just said the most famous Hitler phrase in the world,” Zverev told Cosavon. “This is unacceptable.”
Cortavon turned back and asked the fans to identify themselves, then asked the fans to respect both players. Then, during a court change shortly after Zverev served, the fan was recognized by spectators sitting near him and he was removed by security.
“An individual made derogatory remarks about Alexander Zverev and the fan was identified and removed from the stadium,” USTA spokesman Chris Widmyer said.
Zverev said after the game that he had had fans make derogatory comments before, but not about Hitler.
“He started singing Hitler’s national anthem. It was ‘Germany Above All’ and it was a little too much,” Zverev said.
“I think he’s been involved in the game for a long time, though. I don’t mind, I like the fans to shout loudly, I like the fans to be emotional. But I think I’m German and not proud of the history, it’s not a Great thing, I think he had a front row seat and I think a lot of people heard it. So if I didn’t react, I think it would be bad for me.”
Zverev struggled with the wet conditions in the third set after suffering severe cramps and subsequently dropped that set. But Zverev recovered and won the fifth set, ending the four-hour and 41-minute match around 1:40 a.m. He will face defending U.S. Open champion Carlos Alcaraz in the quarterfinals.
Zverev said it was not difficult to ignore the fan’s comments.
“Honestly, it was his loss not to see the last two sets of that match,” Zverev said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.