Nick Kyrgios was too ‘snarky’ in reply to journalist over racket throwing incident, says former world No 1
Nick Kyrgios has made a lot of headway in terms of keeping his emotions in check, but he still has a “little work” to do with tennis great Chris Evert saying he overstepped the line in his “snarky” reply when a journalist questioned him about nearly hitting a ball boy in Indian Wells.
The Australian enjoyed an excellent run at the BNP Paribas Open last week, reaching the quarter-final where he lost in three sets against Rafael Nadal.
However, his emotions boiled over at the end of the match as he flung his racket to the ground and it nearly hit a ball boy, who had to duck out of the way.
A journalist asked Kyrgios about the incident during the post-match press conference, but the 26-year-old was unimpressed, saying: “What do you want me to say? It was three meters away from the kid. That’s a question you’re going to say after a three-hour battle against Nadal? That’s what you come here with?”
The journalist replied: “I saw a kid duck…”
Kyrgios answered: “He ducked. Duck. He ducked. He ducked. He ducked. He ducked. Jesus. All right.
“Well, if that’s what you’re going to come in here to come ask me, it didn’t hit him. It was an accident. It most definitely wasn’t like [Alexander] Zverev. It was complete accident. I didn’t hit him, thankfully. It wasn’t my intention. So thankfully the ball kid’s okay.
“Great question, though. Unbelievable stuff.
“(Clapping.) Congratulations, man.”
Former world No 1 Evert defended the journalist’s line of questioning as she feels Kyrgios could have handled things better.
“First of all, I thought Nick was playing very well,” the 18-time Grand Slam winner told Eurosport.
“He had a good Indian Wells, I thought he looked in better shape, better condition than he has. He didn’t look out of breath. He looked like he had been working on his fitness.
“I think, for the most part, he kept his emotions inside him the best that he could. At the same time, I thought he was a little snarky. You know, that word snarky, when he was at the press conference because if you look at the video, he almost hit the ball boy.
“So that was a question that was appropriate. It was an appropriate question, and he was probably a little irritated and snarky and didn’t reply in a nice way.
“But all in all again, it’s a journey for him, he’s brilliant in his tennis and he’s made headway both in his tennis and his fitness and his emotions.
“I hope that continues. Still a little work to be done, but I hope that continues.”
Kyrgios apologised to the ball boy after the match and gifted a racket to the youngster.
Former world No 6 gives insight into how he is helping Daniil Medvedev in coaching role
“He gave me a list of 16 players he doesn’t like to play against, and I prepared 16 tactics!”
‘Rafael Nadal will without a doubt play next season if he avoids injuries’ – former world No 3
“If he doesn’t have any injuries he will be competitive and if he is competitive, he will continue for another year.”
Jannik Sinner lauded for avoiding Emma Raducanu, Matteo Berrettini ‘fault’ by refusing big invite
“It’s important to have people around you that are advising you to say what is your priority.”
2024 WTA Rankings: Iga Swiatek holds sway as big guns flop, Jasmine Paolini and Anna Kalinskaya cash in
This way for your post-2024 Dubai WTA Rankings.
2024 ATP Rankings: Novak Djokovic extends record, Jannik Sinner putting pressure on Carlos Alcaraz
Battle for world No 2 ranking between Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner set to intensify.
Andy Murray shares another ‘unpopular opinion’ – ‘Sometimes players are a little bit hypocritical’
Andy Murray wants “players to be a little bit more selective with how they talk about the Tour”.
Jiri Lehecka backed to be the standard-bearer for Czech tennis
Jiri Lehecka could be the standard-bearer for Czech tennis in the men’s game for years to come.
Jordan Thompson claims ‘miracle’ double title in Los Cabos
Jordan Thompson put in the miles on court to get his wins.
Significance of Dubai wildcard not lost on Jordan’s Abdullah Shelbayh
Abdullah Shelbayh is honoured to receive a Dubai wildcard.
Matteo Berrettini confirms split from supermodel girlfriend
Matteo Berrettini has split from supermodel girlfriend Melissa Satta.