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"I Do Regret That" - Tsitsipas Apologizes for Disparaging Comments about Rublev's Game

By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Sunday, December 4, 2022

Stefanos Tsitsipas took tons of heat after his comments about Andrey Rublev at this year’s ATP Finals.

The Greek called Rublev’s game limited after he lost to Rublev in his final round robin match, which ended his season.

Tennis Express

Also Read: Tool Time, Tsitsipas Disses Rublev

"It's a shame. I feel like the better player," Tsitsipas said at the time. "I felt like I could do more with the ball today. I felt like I could just be much more creative. I don't even have to say that. I think it's quite obvious. But, yeah, he prevailed with the few tools that he has. He was able to really take advantage of them and win today."

In a recent interview with Reem Abulleil of Arab News, Tsitsipas says he regretted his words.

“What I said in that press conference against Rublev was very unfair towards him and not correct,” Tsitsipas told Arab News in an interview.

Tsitsipas says he wanted to motivate Rublev to defeat Casper Ruud in his next match, because it would have meant that the Greek would finish the season at No.3 in the world.

“I really wanted Andrey to win the next match and my approach was to add fuel to the fire a little bit, to make him want to be more hungry and more concentrated on his next match,” Tsitsipas said. “I think that was wrong to do, because it felt like, I don’t know, he wasn’t able to perform, I saw the match, I don’t think he performed as good as I would have expected him to perform. That was my only way to finish in the top three if he had won that match. I just played a little bit with it and tried to use my chances as much as I could. But of course the best thing would have been to win my match.”

Tsitsipas gave a warmer account of Rublev’s game in the interview. The pair have played 11 times with Tsitsipas owning the 6-5 edge.

“Andrey is an excellent player,” he said. “He has a great array of weapons that he uses extremely well on the court. He can hit the ball really hard, he’s sort of like the Marat Safin of the new generation.

“I don’t think he’s limited in his game, I think he’s put himself over many years now on the tour that he’s capable of competing against the best. He’s one of the most disciplined guys out here, who is very professional towards his work. He’s a very funny guy, a very nice soul, I enjoy being around him. He’s extremely friendly and likes to make fun of himself.

“I do regret saying that, yes. It was not very good for me, I was extremely hurt that I wasn’t able to go all the way at the ATP Finals, it hurt me a lot, I tried to let some bad energy out but that wasn’t the responsible or the good way, even if I wanted something out of it, it wasn’t the right way to do it. Definitely if I would see him I would like to apologize to him for thinking like this about him because it’s definitely not how I think about him in reality.”