Tennis star threatened and warned not to return home after shock loss

Emma Raducanu: British teen wins US Open

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Diego Schwartzman received online threats following a shock loss at the Davis Cup. The Argentine lost 6-4 6-3 to unranked 18-year-old Daniil Ostapenkov, who has yet to play a match on the ATP Tour.

The 29-year-old failed to convert seven break points at the Buenos Aires Lawn Tennis Club en route to a defeat at the hands of the Belarusian junior tennis player.

Schwartzman revealed the abuse he suffered after what he described as one of “the worst days of his career.”

“I lost to an unranked, inexperienced player. All that already affects (me) a lot. Although 80 or 90 percent of the people are always encouraging (me), there was a minority who criticized me with bad intentions,” he said.

“I received threats, insults and requests not to return to Argentina. More or less, it affects (me).”

The incident comes after Sloane Stephens revealed she suffered abuse following a defeat to Angelique Kerber at the recently concluded US Open.

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Fellow American Shelby Rogers feared she would receive “death threats” following her loss to Emma Raducanu at Flushing Meadows.

Schwartzman says he has tried to interact with some trolls on social media to find out the motivation behind their abuse.

“Sometimes I start to answer some messages and I ask those people if they realize what they are sending,” he commented.

“The vast majority apologize and say they had not realized it. But at the moment it hurts. That very ill-intentioned criticism is the only bad thing about social networks.”

The former Roland Garros semi-finalist redeemed himself in his following match, dispatching Alexander Zgirovsky 6-1, 6-2, which helped his country win the Davis Cup tie 3-1.

As a result, Argentina secured their place in the 2022 Davis Cup qualifiers which will take place next March.

Following his win Schwartzman explained: “Not only playing Davis, but in Buenos Aires, with a lot of people you don’t see, it’s not easy. My level can be and has to be much better.

“After the game on Saturday I had a difficult day in the spirit of being able to get up and enjoy with the group.

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“The most normal thing was that we won the series. It’s what everyone expected. But when you have a very difficult day at work like it was on Saturday and then you win, it excites you because you have some internal things withheld.”

Schwartzman has won four ATP titles and earned more than $10M in prize money so far in his career.

He is ranked number 15 in the world and following a tough fourth-round loss at the US Open to world 117 Botic Van De Zandschulp, the Argentine will be looking to bounce back at the first Indian Wells Masters event in over two years next month.

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