Tensions were high as rain interrupted play for Aussie fan favourite Thanasi Kokkinakis for a fifth time on Tuesday night in front of a packed stadium.

As the umpire climbed down from his chair for a final time in Kia Arena, before it finally closed for the night with the match still unfinished, a loud boo echoed throughout.

A short time before, someone from the rowdy crowd had yelled “you better f***ing not” as Kokkinakis ran his sneaker along the court lines to test how slippery they were.

The 26-year-old returned an intense glare as the crowd fell silent.

Twelve matches remain unfinished from Tuesday, including Aussie Max Purcell who is two sets to one down and facing a tiebreak in the fourth.

Extreme heat had already suspended play on outside courts at Melbourne Park earlier in the day.

It meant Kokkinakis and Italy’s Fabio Fognini didn’t step on the court until 7.30pm.

But within the first game – Kokkinakis leading 40-30 – it started raining, sending tennis fans running from their seats and suspending play for the second time on day two of the Australian Open.

After an agreement with the umpire, Kokkinakis and Fognini exited the court.

While fans stuck around expecting only a slight delay, their hopes were quickly crushed as the rain got heavier and heavier.

The packed stadium was no longer. Ponchos were whipped out of bags, wind flipped umbrellas inside out and those with no protection ran for cover.

Sports presenter James Bracey described the weather as a “mini hurricane of sorts”.

“It has turned with some ferocity. Melbourne … beautiful one day, chaotic the next,” he said on Nine.

By 9pm the rain had stopped, the court was dry again, thanks to the work of the ballkids, and the stadium was packed once more with eager fans.

Within 10 minutes, as the players were back on court warming up, the rain started again.

This time, the crowd remained – chanting and doing the wave.

At 9.20pm, Kokkinakis walked back on the court for the third time with a shake of his head.

And once again, it started raining.

More than 20 ballkids were sent back out on the court on their hands and knees with towels.

Just before 10pm, Kokkinakis and Fognini were finally able to continue playing.

However, about an hour and a half later, more rain caused a short break in play in the third set – Kokkinakis leading 6-1 6-2 2-1.

Determined to keep going, the Australian and Italian got back to the match, but it wasn’t long before rain began to fall again.

It was obvious both players wanted to continue but Kokkinakis had concerns, running his sneaker along the court lines to test how slippery they were.

The players exited the court and a disappointed crowd filed out of the stadium.

Kia Arena was declared closed just before midnight, with Kokkinakis leading 6-1 6-2 4-2.

A revised match schedule for Wednesday shows the match will resume in the afternoon.

The roof was closed on Rod Laver Arena, John Cain Arena and Margaret Court Arena allowing play there to continue throughout the afternoon and into the evening, during the heat and rain.

The Australian Open’s extreme heat policy was activated about 2pm when the tournament’s heat stress scale reached five. Play on outside courts did not resume until 5pm.

The scale takes into account air temperature, the strength of the sun, humidity and wind speed.

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