Roger Federer defends Nick Kyrgios in growing feud with Rafael Nadal
Roger Federer has spoken out in support of Nick Kyrgios after he was criticised for attempting an underarm serve against Rafael Nadal.
Australian Kyrgios won an epic contest against Nadal in Acapulco this week, despite his underarm serve failing to win a point.
Nadal himself blasted Kyrgios, branding him disrespectful to both him and the Mexican crowd.
However, Kyrgios has found an ally in Federer, who believes it is a legitimate tactic to try, particularly against an opponent who takes a deep position when returning, something Nadal is well-known for.
“Yeah underarm is definitely a tactic I believe,” said Federer.
“Especially when guys are hugging the fence in the back. From that standpoint (players) shouldn’t be ashamed to try it out.
“You just look silly if you miss it sometimes. But why not try it?”
Nadal’s interpretation of the events were considerably less kind, with the Spaniard raging: “He is a player who has enormous talent.
“He could win Grand Slams and fight the top positions of the ranking, but there is a reason why he is where he is.
“He lacks respect for the public, the rival and towards himself.”
More from Tennis365:
Novak Djokovic ‘met the goal he set out at the beginning of the season’, says his coach
A good season for Novak Djokovic.
Tennis Top 10
ATP top 10 prize-money earners in 2020: Novak Djokovic at No 1 with two surprise names on the list
Novak Djokovic sitting pretty at No 1.
WTA to adopt ATP-style categories with events changed to WTA Masters, WTA 500, WTA 250?
Changes in line for WTA categories, according to a report.
Dominic Thiem hopes to emulate his coach and experience ‘incredible’ medal winning emotions at Olympics
Dominic Thiem sets sights on Tokyo Olympics.
British tennis given a boost as the LTA agrees a new partnership with Dunlop
LTA ends challenging year on a high with Dunlop deal.
EXCLUSIVE – Davis Cup captain Leon Smith echoes Andy Murray views as he outlines his vision for tennis in 2021
Leon Smith hopes tennis can return to normal in 2021.
Daniil Medvedev: ‘Inside of me there is a winner that maybe sometimes is a bit childish’
Daniil Medvedev determined to drop the antics.
‘We have so much fun together,’ says Dominic Thiem as he joins Roger Federer at 2021 Laver Cup
“I’m really excited to be a part of Team Europe.”
How ‘skinny guy’ Juan Martin del Potro ‘won’ Diego Maradona’s heart and made football icon ‘very happy’
Maradona shared a special relationship with ‘Martin’.
Big changes confirmed for 2021 Madrid Open as tournament announces ‘well-deserved’ expansion
Madrid Open set for a revamp.