TENNIS star Holger Rune was booed by fans and slammed for bad sportsmanship in his defeat to Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.
The world number seven upset the crowd during a dispute over one of his second serves in the first set of their Madrid Open clash.
Fokina was the first to complain after umpire Carlos Bernandes overturned his initial call that the ball was out following a hawkeye review.
The Spaniard wanted Bernandes to check the mark left by the ball on the clay court – but Rune quickly intervened.
He went to check where the ball landed instead and appeared to step on the area, potentially ruining the evidence.
That sparked uproar from the stands and Rune was booed for his display of poor sportsmanship, while Spanish media have branded the Dane's actions "one of ugliest gestures in memory".
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The backlash continued for the rest of the match as Rune lost the round three tie 7-6, 5-7, 7-6.
Rune complained of the heckling to Bernandes but the umpire told him it would only get worse the more he moaned.
Bernandes also accused him of erasing the mark, saying: “I’m going to tell you one thing and that’s it for the whole match.
“There are crowds that you cannot control if you do things like that. They will be even worse if you keep doing [it]. If you just play tennis, they don’t do anything else.
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“I’m just trying to help you to go through this because I have experience here, that you cannot play if they start to do it. For them, what you did was erasing the mark. But [there] was no reason for that, ok?”
Fokina said of the incident: “People have been annoyed and thanks to Rune's gesture people have come more to me and I have noticed that.
"What I was saying to Bernardes is that if we could all see that the ball was bad, why couldn't he go down to check it and correct it even though the machine said it was good."
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