Tennys Sandgren has issued an apology for an offensive tweet he posted about a visit to a gay club in 2012.
The American made a surprise run to the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, having never gone beyond round one of a grand slam before, but his performance has been overshadowed by controversial social media activity.
Sandgren denied links to the alt-right movement on Twitter and later took aim at the media, accusing reporters of "perpetuating propaganda machines".
The 26-year-old this week deleted all his previous activity on Twitter bar one retweet from November 2013.
One deleted post read that a trip to a gay club had "left his eyes bleeding" and Sandgren has apologised for his comments.
"In regards to the gay club tweet from 2012, I used poor and harsh words to describe a bad experience, and is not indicative of how I feel about the people in that community," he wrote.
"To everyone I offended with that, pls [please] accept my apology."
On Wednesday, Serena Williams had called for Sandgren to apologise writing: "I don't need or want one. But there is an entire group of people that deserves an apology."
In regards to the gay club tweet from 2012, I used poor and harsh words to describe a bad experience, and is not indicative of how I feel about the people in that community. To everyone I offended with that, pls accept my apology-- Tennys Sandgren (@TennysSandgren) January 25, 2018