Tennis Podcast, US Open 2018 day four: What would be an appropriate sanction for pep-talk umpire?

Nick Kyrgios was given a talk by umpire Mohamed Lahyani - Getty Images North America
Nick Kyrgios was given a talk by umpire Mohamed Lahyani - Getty Images North America

Not for the first time, a Nick Kyrgios match dominated the headlines at the US Open. On this occasion, however, Kyrgios is ceding much of the spotlight to umpire Mohamed Lahyani, whose decision to get down from his chair and apparently give Kyrgios a pep talk raised many questions and caused a lot of controversy.

On The Tennis Podcast, presenters David Law (BBC 5 Live) and Catherine Whitaker (Amazon Prime Video) give their reaction to the incident and its aftermath. Was Lahyani trying to cajole and counsel Kyrgios? If so, isn’t that favouritism?

When the discussion turns to possible sanctions, Whitaker and Law debate the idea that Lahyani has lost credibility and shouldn’t be able to officiate matches again. On the other hand, Lahyani is a well-respected and very popular figure in tennis, so should everyone cut him some slack?

The media storm generated by the incident has covered up the fact that Kyrgios was “tanking”. Surely he can’t keep doing this? His approach frustrated Law and Whitaker immensely, but they both agree that he will give his all against Roger Federer in the next round

Elsewhere, Angelique Kerber let a healthy lead slip, but eventually won in three sets. Will coming through this test serve her well later in the tournament?

Finally, there’s lots of excitement at the third round line-up. Has there ever been a better one in Grand Slam history?   There will be daily editions of The Tennis Podcast throughout the US Open fortnight. 

The Tennis Podcast is produced in association with the Telegraph and sponsored by Amazon Prime Video, the new home of the US Open in the UK. 

Prime’s live coverage continues on Friday at 3.30pm, with multi-court streams, a highlights programme and a match of the day available on-demand - To find out how to watch the coverage, go to  

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