Kyrgios says he was racially abused by the crowd in Stuttgart Open loss to Murray

Nick Kyrgios has said he was the victim of racist abuse from the crowd during a semi-final loss to Andy Murray at the Stuttgart Open on Saturday.

The Aussie posted on Instagram after the 7-6(5), 6-2 loss to Murray that he heard abusive comments from the stands.

« When is it going to stop? Dealing with racial slurs from the crowd? » he wrote on Instagram. « I understand my behavior isn’t the best all the time – but ‘little black sheep’ ‘shut up and play’ small comments like this are not acceptable. When I hit back at the crowd, I’m penalized. It’s messed up. »

Kyrgios was given a points penalty for breaking his racquet at the end of the first set tiebreaker and then a game penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct in the second set after approaching the crowd and appearing ask, « What did you say? » Kyrgios then sat down and did not continue the match until he spoke with the tournament supervisor.

Murray will play his first grass singles final since winning Wimbledon in 2016 when he takes on second-seeded Italian Matteo Berrettini in Sunday’s final.

Murray knocked out Stefanos Tsitsipas in the quarterfinals on Friday, Murray’s first victory in six years against a top-five ranked opponent.

It is the second final of 2022 for Murray, who lost to Aslan Karatsev at the Sydney Tennis Classic in January, and the first time he has reached two finals in the same season since 2017. Murray, who has du struggling to get back to his best after hip surgery, last won a singles title on the tour at the European Open in Belgium in 2019 and is 46-23 in the final.

Berrettini prevailed 7-6(7), 7-6(5) over Oscar Otte in a tight no-break game. Berrettini saved a set point in the first set tiebreaker and needed three match points to wrap up the win.

Murray and Berrettini have each won one of their two career encounters, with Berrettini the winner of their only grass-court game at Queen’s Club last year.

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