Novak Djokovic has kicked off the Australian Open thoughts video games, failing to say Nick Kyrgios in a listing of contenders to with the primary grand slam of the yr.
The 21-times grand slam champion was requested who he thought-about to be the Australian Open title contenders in an interview with Aussie tennis nice Todd Woodbridge earlier this week.
Recapping the dialog on Thursday, Woodbridge informed The At the moment Present how the snub went down.
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“I requested him about who he thinks the (Australian Open) contenders are, and he went by means of (Rafael) Nadal and (Jannik) Sinner and (Casper) Ruud and I stated ‘no Kyrgios?’, Woodbridge stated.
“He simply smiled and stated ‘after all there’s Nick Kyrgios and we all know what he can do’.
“Then he simply moved on and he stated ‘I hope he’s prepared, he hasn’t had an excellent preparation.’”
Woodbridge prompt it was a deliberate ploy by the world No. 5 to get inside his Aussie rival’s head.
“(Djokovic) laid a couple of issues out for Nick to consider… which is a little bit of locker room speak and jargon about getting in one another’s heads they usually like to try this these two, it makes some good drama for us all.”
World No. 13 Kyrgios has been in career-best type in latest months, having reached the Wimbledon closing in 2022 the place he subsequently misplaced to Djokovic in 4 units.
Nonetheless he’s been battling with a persistent ankle harm in latest months and needed to withdraw from the Adelaide Worldwide in January in a bid to get his physique proper for the Australian Open.
It means he hasn’t performed a aggressive match since he appeared in an ATP occasion in Tokyo final October.
The 27-year-old Sydneysider’s physique will get its first massive check of the summer season when he takes on Djokovic in a charity match on the Rod Laver Enviornment on Friday night.
Tickets for the blockbuster occasion went on sale at noon on Tuesday — they usually have been sizzling property, promoting out in 58 minutes amid unbelievable demand.
That prompted Kyrgios to take a fiery dig at his critics who typically complain he’s ‘unhealthy for tennis’.
“Wow Nick Kyrgios is unhealthy for the game! Wow what a shame, a nationwide embarrassment! How dare he promote out one other stadium, the conceitedness,” a sarcastic Kyrgios wrote.
All tickets have been priced at $20, with proceeds going to the Australian Tennis Basis.
The primary Grand Slam of 2023 begins subsequent Monday, and can see nine-time Melbourne champion Djokovic return to the event for the primary time following his ban a yr in the past.
The famously fiery Australian Kyrgios as soon as labelled the Serbian “a device”, however publicly supplied his help final yr when Djokovic was deported over his Covid vaccination standing.
“I wasn’t his favorite man – let’s say it that manner – for a few years,” Djokovic stated in Adelaide final week. “However he was one of many only a few that stood by me final yr, and I respect that and recognize that.
“In these moments you’ll be able to really see who really helps you and who’s by your aspect and who goes with, I assume, the stream of the society and the pressures that media places on you.
“He was giving me undivided help within the moments the place I used to be being challenged rather a lot, and him as an Australian, I revered that rather a lot. Since then, our relationship has modified for higher.”
Kyrgios mentioned his help for Djokovic in a latest interview with comic Jon Bernard.