Canadian tennis player Denis Shapovalov is very critical of the officiating at this year's Australia Open where he claims that Rafael Nadal is "100%" given preferential treatment by umpires. His comments came after losing to the Spaniard in five sets in the quarterfinals on Tuesday, 3-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 3-6.

Shapovalov was seen complaining to umpire Carlos Bernardes on two occasions during the match. He felt that the 20-time Grand Slam champion should be given a warning for taking too long between points. In the second set, he even went as far as to tell the chair umpire, "You guys are all corrupt" after Bernardes did not see it fit to slap Nadal with a time violation.

Nadal took a commanding 2-set lead early in the match before being bothered by an abdominal discomfort. He was clearly struggling as Shapovalov proceeded to win the third set. In the fourth, Nadal informed the umpire that he had an issue entering his dressing room, making it clear that he was planning to take a medical break. After the Canadian won the fourth set, Nadal went inside the locker rooms for the five-minute time-out.

At this time, Shapovalov was seen having a discussion with Bernardes again. "I think it's unfair how much Rafa is getting away with," said Shapovalov after the match, as quoted by BBC Sport.

"Every other match that I have played, the pace has been so quick because the refs have been on the clock after every single point. I'm completely ready to play and the clock is ticking 3, 2, 1, clicking towards zero. I'm looking at the umpire and obviously I'm going to speak up and say something," he added.

Shapovalov then added that he feels that playing against Nadal also means playing against the officials, something that Tennis Australia will not appreciate. "It's just so frustrating as a player. You feel like you're not just playing against the player; you're playing against the umpires, you're playing against so much more."

Nadal, who is notorious for his string of on-court rituals, admitted that he took extra time to change his kit after the first set, but insisted that he stuck by the regulations. "I know I took some extra time at the end of the first set because I had to change everything there on the chair in the changeover," he said.

He then said that Shapovalov may have gotten too much in his own head. "I really believe it's always in the mind that the top players get bigger advantages and honestly on court is not true. I never feel that I had advantages on court, and I really believe that he's wrong in that case."

Nadal will be facing Matteo Berrettini in the semi-finals on Friday, and will be hoping to get to the final for a chance to win a record-breaking 21st Grand Slam title.

Denis Shapovalov
A frustrated Shapovalov smashed his racquet after losing and battled with the chair umpire over Nadal's serve time, at one point calling the official "corrupt" AFP / Aaron FRANCIS