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Bublik thanks Tsitsipas for new rest break rules in 2022 season debut
The wry Kazakh delivered an impeccably-timed kudos to the Greek star, who is believed to have inspired the ATP’s decision to crack down on time spent off court during a match.
Published Jan 12, 2022
Alexander Bublik may not have won his first match of the new season, but showed his comic instincts were as sharp as ever as he awaited the coin toss in his match against Aussie Aleksandar Vukic.
As umpire Greg Allensworth outlined the new rest break rules, which allow for up to five minutes for players who want to use the bathroom and change clothes, the 24-year-old Kazakh chimed in, “Thanks to Tsitsipas?”
Bublik then looked straight to camera to add, “Stefanos, thank you!”
For those who may have missed the reference—perhaps due to an overlong break of your own—Bublik was referring to the controversy surrounding Stefanos Tsitsipas’ extended breaks taken throughout his US Open clash with Andy Murray. The former No. 1 vocally protested the Greek’s absence from court as the two breaks totaled 15 minutes, seemingly leading the ATP to clarify its rules and reduce the number of breaks to just one per match.
The change didn’t ultimately help Bublik against Vukic, but he did score a win in doubles partnering Jan Zelinski to defeat Aussie duo Adam Taylor and Calum Puttergill, 6-1, 4-6, 10-8.
Bublik enjoyed a breakout 2021, during which he finished runner-up at the Roland Garros men’s doubles event and made his Top 40 debut in singles thanks to two more ATP finals in Antalya and Singapore.
Known for a wit to match his brutal serve, Bublik is at his best when a microphone is nearby to pick up his off-the-cuff gems, like when he insisted Jannik Sinner was a robot after their Miami Open encounter last spring.