John McEnroe's brother Patrick says it's tough being on the tour while being "a total a**hole," referring to Holger Rune's Madrid Open controversy

Mutua Madrid Open - Day Seven
John McEnroe has given his take on Holger Rune's behavior following his recent Madrid Open antics.

Patrick McEnroe, the brother of former World No. 1 John McEnroe, has given his take on Holger Rune's behavior following his recent Madrid Open controversy.

Rune made a third-round exit at the Masters 1000 tournament in Madrid with a 7-6(1), 5-7, 7-6(5) defeat to Alejandro Davidovich Fokina. But arguably the biggest talking point of the match was a line call that Davidovich Fokina disagreed with, and the events that followed.

In the first set, the 29th-seeded Spaniard disagreed with the FoxTenn electronic line calling system and proceeded to argue with the chair umpire Carlos Bernardes and an ATP supervisor. After observing the discussion from a distance, Rune proceeded to erase the ball mark with his foot. That led to the spectators booing him throughout the match, all the way until he left the Manolo Santana Court.

Speaking on an episode of Holding Court with Patrick McEnroe podcast, McEnroe called for Rune to change his behavior as he feels it is tough to be "a total a**hole" and still survive on tour.

"I've said this before, I'll say it again, it's hard to be a total asshole and be on the tennis tour, okay? It's possible to do it but you end up living a very lonely existence," he said.

The American further stated that Rune was starting to "develop a reputation" on tour, which he believes is something that the Dane should be wary of.

"He likes to ham it up, he likes to engage the crowd, but he does it in a way that kind of irritates his opponents at times. Certainly irritates the crowd. So what's happening is, he's developing a reputation," he added.

McEnroe added, however, that Holger Rune will "come around" and is capable of winning big titles.

"I think Rune will come around. I do think he's a threat to do some serious damage at the French [Open this year]. The guy is a tremendous talent, brings a ton of energy to the court. I think he's capable of winning Majors. This year, probably not. He still to me is a little bit up and down in the course of matches, but we've seen him play great and big matches," he opined.

"The crowd did not understand what was going on" - Holger Rune blames match officials for Madrid Open misunderstanding

Holger Rune at the 2023 Madrid Open.
Holger Rune at the 2023 Madrid Open.

Holger Rune has clarified that he does not hold any animosity towards Spanish tennis fans and is looking forward to returning next year.

Rune also laid the blame for the incident during his match against Davidovich Fokina on the chair umpire and the ATP supervisor. The Dane claimed they should have communicated their decision to the fans in attendance, who seemed to be unaware of what was going on.

"There was a lot of talk about bad behavior among Spanish fans last night. Yesterday, the crowd did not understand what was going on. You cannot overrule a computer call. And it took the umpire and the supervisor a very long time to explain this to my opponent. And they did not bother to communicate this to the crowd," he said.

Rune further stated that he looks forward to playing in front of a Spanish audience again.

"Next time, I will take a nap while they discuss," he added. "Just want to say that personally, I hold nothing against the Spanish people and I look forward to come back to the Mutua Madrid Open," Holger Rune said.