Last September, Daniil Medvedev beat Novak Djokovic in straight sets to claim his first Grand Slam trophy at the U.S. Open. Such a moment deserves a glorious celebration, but Medvedev instead took his cues from teenagers playing FIFA, flopping onto the court in the “dead fish” celebration made famous by the soccer game. What goes around comes around, though, as now Medvedev is the victim of different, but almost equally irritating soccer-related trend.
During Medvedev’s second-round showdown against local bad boy Nick Kyrgios, the rowdy Australian crowd kept chanting Cristiano Ronaldo’s signature “siuuuuu” celebration. The fans did it after points, during lulls in the action, and, most frustratingly for Medvedev, in between his serves. It didn’t matter much, as Medvedev won the match 7-6 (1), 6-4, 4-6, 6-2, but the Russian had some choice words for the spectators, saying that those who were doing the chant “probably have a low IQ” and that it was “tough to play” break points when the crowd was chanting it.
Medvedev thought that they were simply booing him, a fact that the interviewer in the clip above had to correct, explaining that it was a “soccer thing, a football thing.” Medvedev tried to tell the crowd to calm down so he could hear the questions being asked, to which the fans responded with, what else, more “siuuuuu” surround sound.
The Australian Open has always been known for having the wildest and loudest crowds of any of the four Grand Slams—I’m laughing imagining a Wimbledon crowd trying to “siuuuuu”—but fans seem particularly feisty this year. To some extent, Medvedev was right to be annoyed. Tennis is a sport that requires superhuman levels of concentration for hours on end, and a combative crowd repeating the same obnoxious noise for an entire match can’t help in that regard. Even if you’re prepared for the Aussie crowd, it can still be rattling to see it play out against you.
Medvedev is a world-class player, though, and one who has played in front of all sorts of crowds, so he should know how to prepare for this particular set of spectators. He also probably didn’t help himself with his post-match comments; I would wager a good amount of money that the crowd at his next match will serenade him to the sounds of “siuuuuu” on repeat. It probably doesn’t help Medvedev’s case that he trolled them right back by writing “siuuuu” on the camera lens after the match, either.
Though the crowd was surely extra loud on Thursday because of Kyrgios’s presence, they now have a new reason to keep the noise levels as high as possible: driving Medvedev crazy.