Nick Kyrgios escapes conviction despite pleading guilty to assaulting ex-girlfriend

Nick Kyrgios talks to the media
Nick Kyrgios in a press conference

A Canberra judge dismissed the common assault charge brought against Nick Kyrgios despite the tennis player entering a guilty plea.

Magistrate Beth Campbell characterised the common assault as an act of “stupidity” and “frustration” but ruled that it was not premeditated and would not record a conviction in the case.

The judge also dismissed the offence because it was at the low end of seriousness for a common assault according to reports coming out of Canberra.

During the trial, the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Magistrates Court heard expert testimony from a psychologist who attested to Kyrgios’ past mental health problems for which he has sought treatment and seen an improvement.

The court heard how Kyrgios pushed his former girlfriend to the ground during the course of a heated argument back in January 2021.

Kyrgios’ psychologist, Sam Borenstein, issued a written report and testified via phone that the tennis star had suffered major depressive episodes in the past and had turned to alcohol and drugs to help him cope.

Borenstein conceded that Kyrgios’ recent knee injury had seen him suffer some mental health setbacks, he was otherwise a patient that was improving and responsive.

Prior attempts by Kyrgios’ attorneys to get the assault allegation resulting from incidents two years ago removed on the basis of mental health issues had failed.

Kyrgios spoke candidly about his performance at the 2019 Australian Open in February of last year, revealing that what had initially seemed to be a happy time in his life had actually been “one of the darkest periods” for the controversial star.

“I was lonely, depressed, negative, abusing alcohol, drugs, pushed away family and friends,” he wrote on Instagram.

“I felt as if I couldn’t talk or trust anyone. This was a result of not opening up and refusing to lean on my loved ones and simply just push myself little by little to be positive.”

During his runs to the Wimbledon final and the US Open quarterfinals, Kyrgios mentioned his mental health issues several times.

In September of last year, when Kyrgios defeated Daniil Medvedev and advanced to the quarterfinals, he took confidence in having overcome “some really tough situations, mentally” and “some really scary places” off the court.

Last month, Kyrgios suffered a setback in his professional career when he withdrew from the Australian Open due to a left knee injury that necessitated arthroscopic surgery.