Don’t be a wet lettuce, ban Nick
TENNIS: When it comes to imposing their most recent punishment on Nick Kyrgios (pictured), it’s just a matter of which variety of lettuce leaf the ATP chooses.
As popular as iceberg and cos are, they are possibly both too firm for a body that remains a genuine contender – along with the IOC – for the sporting world’s greatest toothless tiger. But back to our boy Kyrgios (how hard it is to write “our boy”) who overnight walked off a tennis court in Shanghai because he no longer felt like playing.
That he’s a grossly overpaid sook is beyond dispute, yet the Association of Tennis Professionals has to accept its share of blame for providing the oxygen that Kyrgios requires. He’s smart enough to know they need him, enhanced by the gulf that exists between his rare talents and the impeccably behaved elder statesmen such as Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
The sport desperately requires freshness, and Kyrgios when focused is as fresh and talented as any other young player on the planet. So when the ATP meets to determine an appropriate penalty for Kyrgios, expect it to be more financial than length of suspension.
Lack of action from the ATP has been going on for years, dating back to the peak years of Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe, two of the greatest punks the game has seen but a duo who ruled the tennis world with their foul mouths and boorish behaviour.
Had the ATP taken the long stick rather than the soggy rocket leaf to Connors and McEnroe, then bores like Kyrgios may have been nipped in the bud a whole lot earlier.
So what should he get? Give him a year’s suspension to see if he misses the game, and if he does then how badly does he want to return?