Photo by ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images
- Nick Kyrgios is good for tennis, Novak Djokovic’s coach Goran Ivanisevic has said.
- Kyrgios has had a wild year. He mercilessly trolled Djokovic in a no-holds-barred interview, was ejected from a summer tournament, and was reportedly out drinking in a Wimbledon pub the night before his grudge match against Rafael Nadal.
- Though Ivanisevic wants Kyrgios to respect his peers, he still thinks he is a "special person" and believes he has the talent to become the world’s best male tennis player.
- Kyrgios is currently competing in the Washington Open and plays in a first-round match Tuesday.
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Nick Kyrgios is actually good for tennis even though he is rarely out of the headlines, Goran Ivanisevic has said.
At the 2019 Wimbledon Championships alone he was reportedly drinking in a London pub until 11 p.m. the night before his grudge match against Rafael Nadal. He excelled in that match but ultimately lost, then had an amusing encounter with a female reporter he recognized from the pub at the post-match press conference.
Earlier in the summer, he was ejected from the Italian Open after he threw a chair onto the court. This was just days after he called Novak Djokovic "cringeworthy" and Nadal "salty," mercilessly trolling the elite players in a no-holds-barred interview.
While Ivanisevic, who coaches Djokovic, calls for greater respect to be paid by Kyrgios, he heralds him as a unique talent in the game.
"They are together all year on the courts, on the tour," Ivanisevic told the French website We Love Tennis. "You can have your preferences, but you don’t have to speak about them publicly. If you beat an opponent you don’t like, just give him a smile during the handshake, it’s enough."
Regardless, Kyrgios is "good for tennis" because he has the talent to be a world number one level player. He is also "a special person," Ivanisevic said.
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Ivanisevic added: "What bothers me about it is that he has the talent to be number one in the world. But he is totally unpredictable. He can play three crazy matches and then fall flat. I can’t imagine his career if he were a bit more serious."
Krygios is renowned for having no coach, relying only on his own motivations to train and stay sharp away from competition, and his own insights as a tournament starts and progresses.
Ivanisevic was asked whether things could change for Kyrgios if he was the one to coach him, but he said the 24-year-old seemingly has problems with authority.
"A lot of people are asking me this question right now, but I do not know what to say … I do not even know what I could say to him as a coach. Authority seems to be complicated for Nick to handle. In fact, the only solution that seems to be possible to me is that Nick is coached by Nick.
"Of course, I would really like to see him concentrate and seriously prepare for a Grand Slam tournament to see what he is really capable of doing from first to last point."
Kyrgios is currently competing in the Washington Open, a hard court tournament played at the William H.G FitzGerald Tennis Center in Rock Creek Park, Washingon DC.
Partnering the wildly-talented Next-Gen player Stefanos Tsitsipas, Kyrgios was eliminated from the men’s doubles bracket by the number one seeds Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah on Monday.
Kyrgios returns to the courts Tuesday, though, for a men’s singles match against the American player Thai-Son Kwiatkowski.
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