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Australian star Nick Kyrgios in heated argument with umpire during comeback win

<i>Thomas F. Starke/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images</i><br/>Nick Kyrgios
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Thomas F. Starke/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images
Nick Kyrgios

By Ben Church, CNN

Tennis star Nick Kyrgios was involved in a fiery exchange with the umpire during his comeback win against Stefanos Tsitsipas at TP 500 Halle Open Wednesday.

Kyrgios, 27, had smashed his racquet after losing the opening set and later locked horns with the umpire after he was given a time violation for taking too long between points.

The Australian continued his rant from his chair, arguing that he needed to wipe his hands before playing.

“He said I was playing too slow, statistically I’m one of the fastest,” Kyrgios told reporters after reaching the quarterfinals of the tournament in Germany.

“I had to walk to the sidelines to get my towel, there is this thing called sweat in 30 Celsius heat that runs down onto your hands. I needed to wipe my hands and he gave me a warning.”

Despite the heated exchange, Kyrgios regained his composure to win the next two sets, claiming a 5-7 6-2 6-4 victory against his Greek opponent.

He delighted the crowd with some stunning shots during the contest, a reminder as to what makes him such a dangerous player on grass.

“The support I get from crowds around the world is amazing. They want me to go out and put on a show,” he added.

“I’m happy to still be able to produce this level with the tournaments I play. It is a testament to how hard I do work when I’m not playing.”

Kyrgios, whose on-court outbursts often make him a divisive figure among tennis fans, is unseeded in the tournament but now faces Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta in the next round on Thursday.

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