Federer, speaking after landing the 101st title of his career at the
Miami Open with a straight sets triumph over defending champion John
Isner, strongly disagreed.
He acknowledged that umpires might interact differently with players
they are more familiar with, but said it didn't amount to preferential
”It's a tough one but what I do feel sometimes is that on the outside
courts, more than just preferential treatment to the top guys, they are
tougher on the rules," Federer told AFP.
"You do something - bang, warning. It's like there is no messing about.
"But with the umpires with the top guys on the main courts, I think
the umpires know the top guys, they know their problems, they know how
they behave and how they will react, so they know what acting stupid or
silly means and what normal is.
"So because we know each other very well, I think it's easier for an
umpire to handle a top player who they know over an up-and-coming guy
like Tsitsipas or a young guy and that sometimes gets lost in
translation and maybe bad mistakes can happen.
"But I don't see preferential treatment, there shouldn't be," Federer
said. "If I get warnings - I got one recently - it's normal. So they
should just, based on what happens, take those decisions and I really
feel the umpires do that.
"I am sorry that Stefanos feels that way."
Tsitsipas, 20, shocked Federer in the fourth round of the Australian
Open and was runner-up to Federer in February in Dubai, where the Swiss
great claimed his 100th career ATP title.
He was ousted in the fourth round of the Miami Open singles by Canadian teen Denis Shapovalov.
But playing in the doubles final with Wesley Koolhof on Saturday he
accused umpire Gianluca Moscarella of granting "privileges" to American
opponents Bob and Mike Bryan "like you do with Roger and everybody
Tsitsipas elaborated on Twitter in response to a question from a
Twitter follower, saying that despite Federer being his "favourite" the
20 time Grand Slam champion, along with the likes of Rafa Nadal and
Novak Djokovic, are protected by umpires.
"I think players that have been doing really well over the years,
players that are generally much respected in the tennis world have
privileges when it comes to certain rules and umpire decisions," the
world No 10 wrote. "I felt this couple of times when playing these
guys and I think it’s a bit unfair.
"Roger Federer is always going to be my favorite player no matter
what. I don't want to drag him into this. It's not his fault or
intention, it's the umpires that are trying to protect them more than
they are supposed to. Nothing more than that."