Nick wonder Down Under?
AUSTRALIA needs another great tennis champion, and Nick Kyrgios, pictured, has the talent to fit the bill – providing he learns how to channel his frustration when things do not go his way, 11-time Grand Slam singles champion Rod Laver said yesterday.
Laver, who completed two calendar-year Grand Slams and is regarded by some as the greatest player of all time, was speaking at the unveiling of a statue in his likeness outside Melbourne Park’s main showcourt, which bears his name. “Ability-wise, he could be the best tennis player in the world, only he is the one who gets in his way,” Laver said of the world number 13. “He plays some magnificent tennis, but then something gets in the way and he finds himself being challenged by other things, whether behaviour or whatever seems to come up. “Looking at maybe maturity… he’s still very young on the world tour. I want him to be the best player in the world. We need another great Australian champion.”
Kyrgios, 21, will return to tournament play at the Australian Open later this month, after serving an ATP ban for not trying in a match at the Shanghai Masters, the latest in a series of incidents that have blighted his young career.
Laver, renowned for his gentlemanly conduct on and off court during his heyday in the 1960s, said Kyrgios needed to learn how to deal with disappointment on court without racket-throwing and the like. – Reuters