Saturday , October 1 2022

Kyrgios’ touching note after beating world No.1

Nick Kyrgios dedicated his come from behind victory over world No.1 Daniil Medvedev in Montreal to his ill mother back home.

In one of the biggest wins of his career, Kyrgios continued his giant-killing run, with the Australian outlasting Medvedev 6-7(2) 6-4 6-2 in an arduous, heat-affected second-round clash that saw him claim his 14th win from his past 15 matches. His only defeat in that run came against Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final.

It was Kyrgios’ second career win over a world No.1, with the first coming in 2014 over Rafael Nadal during his dream Wimbledon debut run that ended in the quarter-finals. However, the backdrop to one of his most memorable moments on tour has been filled with pain according to the world No.31.

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Kyrgios’ mother Norlaila is currently unwell in hospital, with her health problems well documented during his rise to the final at the All England Club.

“Be strong Ma,” Kyrgios wrote on the cameras after the win over the world No.1.

“It’s hard because even travelling now, my mum is in hospital at the moment, my dad hasn’t been very well, my brother just had a baby and I don’t get to be there with my family when normal people would like to be with them,” Kyrgios said post-match.

“It’s hard being from Australia because we can’t travel back and forth. There’s a lot of things people don’t see. They only see me winning, losing, throwing a racquet, doing those things. They don’t really understand the challenges that I face or what people on tour face, what’s going on in their personal lives.”

Despite being emotionally impacted by his family’s predicament, the Aussie didn’t play like it against Medvedev, displaying the type of resilience that has seen him take his game to a new level in recent months.

He mixed up his play well against his top-ranked rival, employing a serve-volley tactic on his service games in an attempt to unsettle the Russian. It worked, with Medvedev failing to break his serve in the first two sets.

Medvedev’s frustration boiled over during the second set when he complained to the umpire about Kyrgios being coached from the stands. The chair umpire rejected the suggestion, saying Kyrgios’ box was offering support to the player and nothing more.

In the third set, Kyrgios broke Medvedev in the fifth game and then went on to assert his dominance, finishing the Russian off with another service game to love, to close out the match.

“I feel like we know each other’s games well, I’m not the type of player who goes into the match looking at rankings or anything like that,” Kyrgios said.

“It’s just who I’m playing and what kind of ball they’re giving me, and today I had a very clean objective of how I was going to play, a lot of serve and volley, a lot of aggressive play from the back, and I executed better than he did, that’s all it came down to.

“He won the first set and I feel like I had opportunities there as well, hopefully I can keep this going.”

Kyrgios goes into the US Open in hot form and will undoubtedly instil fear in the higher seeds at Flushing Meadows. However, the Aussie was quick to hose down what the win could mean for his upcoming campaign.

“A grand slam is much, much different to any other tournament. If I was to put myself in the position of a grand slam I’ve still got to win another set against him, and that’s not easy at all. He’s a machine.

“He’s the best player in the world for a reason and a grand slam is a totally different beast.

“I feel confident in my body and mentality going into the US Open, but at the same time there’s so much time between then and now, I’ve got to focus on this event, and then Cincinnati, I’m not thinking about the US Open right now.”

Kyrgios is currently ranked 31 and with the top 32 players given seedings for the US Open, he’s firming to be among them, especially with Djokovic and possibly Alexander Zverev being absent from New York due to vaccine mandates and injury.

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