US Open 2019: Medvedev booed by crowd after middle-finger gesture

AFP

Daniil Medvedev was booed after his win over Feliciano Lopez at the US Open following a contest marred by controversy.

The world number five was given a code violation in the first set after angrily snatching a towel from a ball boy.

He reacted to that punishment by flipping his racquet in the direction of the umpire's chair, though he was not assessed a further violation.

Medvedev was then seen to aim a middle-finger gesture towards the crowd in an incident missed by the umpire.

The Russian was subsequently jeered by the Louis Armstrong Stadium crowd throughout the match but that did not prevent him from claiming a four-set triumph to reach the last 16.

Further boos rained down on him as he clinched victory with Medvedev more than happy to embrace the role of villain.

"The energy you giving me right now will be enough for the next five matches," he said on court afterwards.

"The more you do this, the more I will win."

He was more reserved afterwards, telling reporters of his actions: "I was in the heat of the moment, started losing the momentum, I paid for it the whole match after, as you saw it wasn't that easy so I'm just happy to win.

"Even as I say I paid for it the whole match but the crowd was electric, even the bad energy I needed to turn into good energy and that's why I won.

"After the match I talked to Feli at the net and to his coach in the locker room to say that 'guys, it's not against you'. They said that they understand me.

"What I can say is that I'm working on myself and hopefully I will be better next time."

Medvedev faces qualifier Dominik Koepfer in round four, when the crowd is unlikely to be on his side if Friday's proceedings are any evidence.