Andy Murray revealed he had asked Wimbledon organizers not to schedule it last on Center Court due to concerns over late arrivals – and said the 1.30pm start time was a “fundamental thing to to change”.
The match did not start until 7:46 p.m. and Murray appeared to be gaining the upper hand as he led by two sets to one before play was suspended shortly before the 11 p.m. curfew.
On the restart the next day, it was Tsitsipas who won to end Murray’s hopes.
It wasn’t the only late night at Wimbledon as Novak Djokovic saw a match postponed overnight and also narrowly missed curfew in a competition that only started at 8.40pm.
Before playing at the US Open, Murray spoke about his frustrations with the Wimbledon schedule and the 1:30 p.m. start on Center Court.
“It seems like a fundamental thing to change. Just come back to the 1pm or even 12:30pm departure. But it’s for a financial reason that they do it, so it will not change.
“I had several conversations before the start of the tournament and asked not to play the third match every day because that’s what will happen with the start at 1:30 p.m. and the breaks between matches.
“The roof, in my opinion, was there when it rained so that there were always games that could happen for the fans and for the TV, and that’s great. [But] it feels like we are getting used to the darkness now to play games later in the evening.
“When you get that third place, you have no way of training on an indoor grass pitch. It is not possible. I skipped Roland Garros to prepare to play my best tennis at Wimbledon, but then you play every match under different conditions than you prepare for.
“You play an indoor game, the next day you train outside, then you come out to play again and it’s indoors and then we were stopped for the weather. The next day you play outside. That’s okay, but anyone who plays tennis knows that playing indoors and outdoors is not the same thing. It’s a very different feeling.
Wimbledon is the only Grand Slam with a curfew, but not the only one where late nights can cause problems for players.
“In general, it’s not good for anyone,” Murray added.
The moment Murray won an epic match against Kokkinakis
“A lot of times when players complain about this stuff, you hear, ‘Oh, shut up and carry on. Try working in a warehouse from nine to five.
“I understand that. I know that I have the chance to play tennis. It’s just that tennis is also partly entertainment. I don’t think it helps the sport much when you’re playing at 4 in the morning.
“Everyone leaves because they have to go home by public transport and you finish a match like that in front of 10% of the crowd. You don’t see it in other sports, so it’s clearly untrue.
Murray takes on Corentin Moutet in his US Open opener on Tuesday.
Murray won the US Open in 2012 and reached the third round last year.