Rafa Nadal hits out at US Open organisers for waiting three days to suspend Fabio Fognini from the tournament for unsportsmanlike conduct during his first round loss against fellow Italian Stefano Travaglia, which took place on Wednesday.
Fognini picked up three code violations during his 6-4, 7-6(8), 3-6, 6-0 loss to Travaglia including vulgar language to Swedish chair umpire Louise Engzell.
On Friday, the 30-year-old Fognini was fined $24,000 but was able to still play in two matches in doubles with partner Simone Bolelli before the Grand Slam Board suspended Fognini from the tournament on Saturday.
"Of course (it) is not a positive thing (what Fognini did)," top-seeded Nadal said, after beating Leonardo Mayer in his third round singles match.
"Of course if you are not doing the right things on the court, of course, you need to be in some way affected.
"But at the same time it's true that things can be made (to) happen earlier because I believe that he played two matches after that match, two doubles matches.
"If they want to suspend him, (it would) be much better to do it immediately, not three days later or four days later."
— Fabio Fognini (@fabiofogna) August 31, 2017
Fognini did apologise for his outburst via social media saying on his Twitter account, "It was just a very bad day, but it did not forgive my behaviour in the match.
"Although I‘m a hot-head (and though I've been right in most circumstances) I was wrong. But in the end, it's only a tennis game.