WATCH: Intense Felix Auger-Aliassime brushes off Laver Cup spat with Gael Monfils
Felix Auger-Aliassime and Gael Monfils shared some heated moments after the Canadian complained to the umpire during their Laver Cup meeting.
Auger-Aliassime wasn’t happy with the frequent breaks being taken by Monfils who appeared to believe the event was an exhibition.
The complaint appeared to get Monfils back up as he felt it wasn’t in the spirit of the tournament.
After Monfils had started their match at a leisurely pace, Auger-Aliassime raised a complaint with the chair umpire.
“Are you sticking to the ATP rules?” Auger-Aliassime queried
“Are you telling me that’s normal? He sits down for like 30 seconds. I mean, that is a time violation warning. That’s not, ‘I’m gonna talk to him.’ Cause I can play games too. I can play games too.”
Monfils then approached the Team World area and spoke with the Canadian with team captain John McEnroe close by and Ben Shelton in Auger-Alliassime’s ear.
“He is doing all this BS right now, don’t worry about it; don’t even look at him. If he comes over here to talk again, walk away or stare him down. As soon as he knows that you’re business and you are not looking over at him anymore; you are not looking at the umpire, he’s gonna be like ‘Oh shoot,’” Ben Shelton said.
"I can play games too…" 👀
— Eurosport (@eurosport) September 23, 2023
The Frenchman then vented his frustrations to Team Europe captain Bjorn Borg.
“Honestly, I don’t have the practice to play. If I don’t want to play a tournament, I don’t play a tournament, you know what I mean? They call me and they tell me how [the Laver Cup] will be so nice; we can be free. And then I feel like, [this sucks?] because it hurt him, you know, it hurt him. And I don’t want to hurt him,” Monfils told Borg.
“Me, I am here to have fun,” Monfils added.
After putting away Monfils to give Team World another point on a great opening day of the Laver Cup for the US-Dominated outfit, he wrote off the confrontation as ‘just one of those things’.
“We are trying to play hard, to compete, but also to have fun,” said the world No. 14 afterwards.
“Things get tense on the court sometimes. You want to stand up for yourself. Only one guy gets the win in the end.
“You try your best to stay cool but at the same time to stand up for yourself. That’s what I was trying to do, get the energy going and just try to not let him take too much ground I guess.”
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