World No 3 Alexander Zverev was removed from the ongoing Mexican Open after attacking the umpire's chair with his racquet during an astonishing rant. The Olympic champion German was furious after he and doubles partner Brazilian Marcelo Melo lost 6-2, 4-6, 10-6 to the British-Finn pair of Lloyd Glasspool and Harri Heliovaara.
Zverev after congratulating their opponents turned his rage towards the umpire, lashing out at the chair with his racquet three times before returning for a fourth crack as the umpire descended the stairs in ugly scenes.
The 24-year-old is the defending singles champion of the ongoing event. He was due to face countryman Peter Gojowczyk in the second round but has now been removed from the tournament.
"Due to unsportsmanlike conduct at the conclusion of his doubles match on Tuesday night, Alexander Zverev has been withdrawn from the tournament in Acapulco," the ATP confirmed in a statement.
It's unclear if Zverev will face any fines or a suspension. Zverev said he regretted his behaviour and apologised for the incident.
"It is difficult to put into words how much I regret my behavior during and after the doubles match yesterday," Zverev was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.
"I have privately apologized to the chair umpire because my outburst towards him was wrong and unacceptable, and I am only disappointed in myself. It just should not have happened and there is no excuse. I would also like to apologize to my fans, the tournament, and the sport that I love," he said.