John McEnroe’s trademark petulance was perhaps to be expected when he barged into Queen’s Club in 1984 in a bid to claim his fourth career title there.
McEnroe had relinquished his world number one ranking the previous week when he blew a lead of two sets and a break to fall to Ivan Lendl in the French Open final at Roland Garros.
And even an emphatic semi-final victory over his nemesis and defending champion Jimmy Connors was evidently not going to prevent McEnroe displaying his full range of frustrations.
McEnroe cruised through the first set of the Queen’s final against his opponent, the world number 105 Leif Shiras, but blew his top in the second set as his compatriot hit back.
Trailing 5-2 in the second set, McEnroe indulged in a three-minute shouting match, calling umpire Robert Smith a “moron” after he over-ruled a line call which would have given the favourite a service break.
Later, McEnroe also confronted somebody in the crowd and then Shiras himself, whom he accused of making fun of him by taking a series of practice swings on the baseline.
“The umpire overruled the decision and I still feel he was wrong,” insisted McEnroe, who went on to hammer Connors again in straight sets and retain his Wimbledon title two weeks later.