Andy Murray’s father-in-law and coach to Ana Ivanovic, Nigel Sears collapsed at the Australian Open – just weeks before his daughter Kim is due to give birth.
Sussex-based Sears, 58, fell ill during the third round match between Ana Ivanovic – who he coaches – and Madison Keys today.
He was treated by paramedics in the stands and then stretchered away with his shirt off and attached to an oxygen tank.
He is understood to have been conscious and alert as he was taken to hospital.
Murray was unaware of what had happened as he was playing on a neighbouring court. He was informed after his match by his mother, Judy, and went straight to the hospital.
After his post-match on-court interview was cancelled, Murray was seen walking, with his racket bag over his shoulder and still in his tennis kit, towards the transportation area at Melbourne Park.
Murray’s post-match press conference was also cancelled.
His opponent said: ‘I just heard that Andy went direct to the hospital. Good thing is (Sears) is conscious, he’s speaking. So we hope there’s nothing bad and, of course, first is the family and the health, so I think it’s very good that Andy went there to be with him.’
Murray’s brother Jamie told reporters Sears, who has been taken to hospital for tests, was ‘conscious, talking and sitting up’.
Sears’ daughter Kim is not in Melbourne in support of her husband as she awaits the birth of their first child in a few weeks. Murray said he would return home and quit the tournament if she went into labour.
Ivanovic was leading 6-4, 1-0 in the second set of the third round match when Sears appeared to fall while returning to his seat. She went on to lose 4-6 6-4 6-4 to the number 15 seed.
According to ESPN, Sears had told members of Ivanovic’s coaching team he had not been feeling well about a half hour before he collapsed.
Medical staff quickly arrived on the scene and the players remained courtside for around 10 minutes before being told to head to the locker room as the match was suspended indefinitely.
Ivanovic warmed up in an underground car park and play resumed almost an hour later. She was given the option of stopping play but wanted to continue.
It is the second time in three days Ivanovic’s match has been stopped. Her second-round match on Thursday was suspended for around 30 minutes after a spectator fell in the stands.