‘Not too bad for a part-time player,’ says Nick Kyrgios after comeback win over Ugo Humbert at Wimbledon
Nick Kyrgios returned for a matinee performance and then booked at least one more Wimbledon encore after beating Ugo Humbert in five dramatic sets.
The Australian showman had thrilled the No.1 Court crowd when his delayed first-round match was moved under the roof on Tuesday evening – only to be halted when the 11pm curfew arrived with the score 3-3 in the final set.
Kyrgios returned at just after 3pm, and around 35 hugely entertaining minutes later he had wrapped up a 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-1, 9-7 win.
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Kyrgios, who had previously stayed in Australia all year due to Covid concerns and played just two events prior to the Championships, could be heard saying beforehand that he was “so tired”.
He also revealed how he fancied a beer at the Dog and Fox, the pub in Wimbledon Village where he had spent the evening ‘preparing’ for his meeting with Rafael Nadal two years ago.
The 26-year-old had to shrug off a nasty fall on the baseline when he was wrongfooted by a fine return from Humbert.
As the umpire rushed over Kyrgios writhed around for a few seconds before getting to his feet, towelling himself down and saying “good shot” to his opponent.
He struck at 7-7 with a third break point which French 21st seed Humbert could only drop into the net.
Humbert forced two break-back points but Kyrgios saved both, the second with a scorching backhand down the line, and a massive serve down the ‘T’ wrapped up victory.
“Not too bad for a part-time player,” he said afterwards. “But it didn’t take much to get me off the couch in Canberra. I love playing Wimbledon, I heard there was a crowd here, so it was an easy decision.
“The atmosphere last night was one of my favourite memories. We’re all struggling with Covid, hoping the world comes through it, but it was great to be out here.
“I got home late yesterday and was in such pain physically this morning, it was so long since I played, but it’s easy to get up with a full crowd and it was so much fun. I’m just using it as a change of scenery really.”
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