‘If I die, who will take responsibility?’: Daniil Medvedev snaps at umpire as Russian struggles in Tokyo heat and humidity before beating Fabio Fognini in third round of men’s singles event
Daniil Medvedev’s struggles with the Tokyo heat continued as he suggested he could die due to the extreme weather conditions.
The world No 2 required two medical timeouts and one visit from a trainer before he went on to beat Fabio Fognini in the third round of the men’s tennis singles.
However, the Russian Olympic Committee star was struggling so much with the suffocating heat and humidity at the Ariake Tennis Park that umpire Carlos Ramos asked him if he could continue playing.
Daniil Medvedev’s suggested he could die due to the extreme weather conditions in Tokyo
The world No 2’s struggles with the heat and humidity at the Olympic Games continued
Medvedev retaliated however and snapped back: ‘I can finish the match, but I can die. If I die, who will take responsibility?’
The heat did not stop Medvedev from claiming a 6-2 3-6 6-2 victory against his Italian counterpart.
But it raised further questions over why organisers did not grant requests earlier in the tournament from Medvedev and other players – including World No 1 Novak Djokovic – to move all of the matches at the Games to the evening.
Medvedev, 25, called for a rethink on scheduling, stating: ‘The matches maybe should start at six, because it actually gets much light on the court,’ the 25-year-old told reporters.
The world No 2 required two medical timeouts and one visit from a trainer
‘Some tournaments do it. I don’t think they’re going to change in the middle of the tournament but that’s what can be done.
‘The fact that we have only one minute between changeovers is a joke.
‘I think if you ask, let’s say 200 tennis players that are here, I think 195 will tell you that one minute is a joke and it should be 1:30 like it is in ATP tournaments.’
Serbian Djokovic meanwhile said: ‘I don’t understand why they don’t start matches at, say, 3pm,’ he said.
Visibly suffering, Medvedev took his time between points, which drew protests from Fabio Fognini
‘We still have seven hours to play. They have lights on all the courts.’
‘You feel you have weights on your shoulders because there’s so much heat and humidity and stagnated air.
‘You don’t feel yourself, you feel slow with your legs. It’s not the first time we get to experience tough conditions. I spoke to a couple of guys in the locker room and all of them said this is the toughest that they have experienced day to day.
‘I don’t really get why ITF [the International Tennis Federation] doesn’t want to move the matches.’
World No 1 Novak Djokovic called for all of the matches at the Games to move to the evening