Russian tennis star Daniil Medvedev expressed his “disappointment” in “disrespectful” fans following his loss to Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open final on Sunday evening.
In the post-match press conference, Medvedev said he believed the fans at this year’s first grand slam final were biased against him due to his nationality.
“I think nationality also plays a key in the support I do or don't get. When you play someone from another country, the crowd roots for them and not for [Russia],” the world No. 2 was quoted as saying by the Sports.ru website.
During the tightly contested match that saw Nadal clinch the title from two sets behind, Medvedev said he was heckled by fans who supported 35-year-old Nadal.
“From now on I am going to be playing for myself, for my family, for the people who believe in me, and of course for all the Russians that have supported me,” Medvedev, 25, said.
Medvedev said the experience has left him questioning the longevity of his career after age 30.
“After today, my inner child stopped dreaming, and it's going to be very difficult to keep playing when things are like this,” he said.
Medvedev pledged to continue promoting and supporting Russian tennis.
“If there’s a tournament on hard court in Moscow, I will go there, even if I miss Wimbledon or Roland Garros,” Medvedev said.
Nadal’s victory brought him his 21st Grand Slam title, making him the most successful men's tennis player of all time.