Patrick Mouratoglou says Stefanos Tsitsipas took a leaf out of Novak Djokovic’s toilet break book

US Open
Stefanos Tsitsipas down

Patrick Mouratoglou insists Stefanos Tsitsipas doesn’t take lengthy bathroom breaks to disrupt his opponents’ rhythm, saying he does it to “reset and to refocus” while also adding that the Greek “learned” the trick from Novak Djokovic.

Tsitsipas has come under fire after long trips to the toilet at the Cincinnati Masters and the US Open with Alexander Zverev accusing him taking his phone with him to the toilet at the Masters 1000 event and Andy Murray said he “lost respect” for the world No 3 following two lengthy breaks.

The 23-year-old, though, is adamant that he did not break any rules while his compatriot Maria Sakkari defended him, saying he is “very intense on the court, but he is very slow in other movements”.

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In a video interview with Tennis Majors, Mouratoglou – who is part of Tsitsipas coaching team – says the Greek took the breaks to calm himself down.

“When a player takes a toilet break, he takes a toilet break most of the time not because he needs the toilet but because it is a moment for him to reset and to refocus,” he said.

“Most of the time he’s lost the set. He needs to calm down, be alone and be within himself to find himself a solution and that is the only thing that Stefanos does.

“It’s even annoying to think that a player would only do that to disturb the rhythm of his opponent. When he did that (took a break) against Murray he just won a set. So why would he try to break the rhythm?”

Mouratoglou also revealed that the trips to the bathroom are something they picked up from world No 1 Djokovic as the 20-time Grand Slam winner used the policy during the French Open final.

“When he lost his Roland Garros final he was two sets to love up. Djokovic took a toilet break, came back and then it was a different match. He learned from that,” he added.

“He didn’t learn that Djokovic broke his rhythm. He found out that Djokovic took time for himself in the locker room and was able to reset and come back different.

“He learned that, tried it and it worked out for him. That’s why he continues to do it.”

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