An unexpected drama unfolded in the middle of a quarterfinal encounter between Cristian Garin and Nuno Borges at the Millennium Estoril Open, with home favorite Borges appearing the victim of shoddy officiating en route to a 6-2, 7-6 (3) loss to Garin.

"I left the court without understanding the umpire’s judgment," Borges reportedly said after the match. "He knows he made a mistake. It didn’t make any sense. Point shouldn’t stop because someone in the crowd shouts. He felt something coming from the crowd but we continued but he missed. Garin told me he missed because I stopped. It’s not his fault, but he doesn’t look good in this situation as well…"

Returning up break point in the sixth game of the second set, Borges returned a deep shot from Garin that caused many in the partisan crowd to call "out" on his behalf. Garin proceeded to hit the following shot, an inside-in forehand, out wide, and began appealing to umpire Christian Rask that he had been distracted.

Rask then announced the score, awarding the point to Garin without explanation, which led to further confusion for Borges, the crowd, and fans watching at home. Though a distraction had come from the crowd, Borges did not appear to hinder Garin, kept the ball in play, and it was Garin who had missed the reply.


A lengthy disagreement followed between Borges, Rask, and supervisor Carlos Sanches, who, after hearing the two versions of events, deferred to Rask’s original call.

The moment was reminiscent of what transpired between Novak Djokovic and Luca Nardi last month at the BNP Paribas Open, when Djokovic argued that a pause from Nardi amounted to a hindrance that ought to have won him the point. But where the call went against Djokovic in Indian Wells, it went for Garin in Estoril, and the Chilean went on to win what became a marathon game and the match in straight sets.

“He stopped the point,” Garin reportedly said after the match. “I stopped too. I don’t know if it’s my point or if we should replay it. Need to check it. I will check it later. The atmosphere was crazy after that and I’m very proud of myself. It was kind of annoying during the match…”

Garin will next face No. 2 seed Hubert Hurkacz in the semifinals on Saturday.