Rafael Nadal explains umpire feud at Wimbledon


RAFAEL NADAL has explained the details of his long-running feud with umpire Carlos Bernardes.

Bernardes was the official for Nadal’s straight-sets victory against Mikhail Kukushkin at Wimbledon this afternoon.

The Spaniard was penalised with a time violation before the match for taking too long between warming up and starting the first game.

He was then warned for the same reason when changing shirts before the third set.

But it is not the first time the World No 1 has come to blows with the Brazilian tennis official.

In 2015 Nadal asked the ATP to stop appointing Bernardes to his matches following a bust-up.

“No. No problem with the umpire. I am nobody to say ‘I don't want him on my court’,” Nadal said.

“I just can ask if I believe that somebody's not doing the things fair with me or was not respectful for me, I just can ask if is possible to have another umpire.

“I can't say, I don't want this umpire. I say, If is possible, I prefer another umpire on my court.

Nadal won his second-round match in straight sets

“Is something that happened in the past. It’s not about Roland Garros. It’s about what happened in Rio de Janeiro a couple years ago.”

However, Nadal accepted that he was slow on Centre Court this afternoon.

“For me personally was disrespectful,” Nadal said.

“Not because of time violation. I can understand the time violations.

“I can't understand when I was wrong, I make a mistake, I put my shorts the other way.

“You cannot force me to change my shorts in front of everybody, you know.

“For me, that's not respectful. That was, One second (laughter), because I feel the pressure. We finish the match, so I don't need that (laughter).

“That's all. Is not about the time. It’s not about this kind of stuff. It’s about the problem that I had with him in the past. It's about that bad moment. That's all.

“No problems with him. I respect when I am slow, accept the warnings. I do my best to be quick.

“Sometimes I am not good enough to be that quick. I need my time to think about what to do for the next point, that's all.”

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