Shang­hai and dry

Kyr­gios draws jeers yet again be­fore apol­o­gis­ing for re­tir­ing in China

Sport360 - - Tennis - By Dan Gil­lott @Sport360 edi­to­rial@sport360.com

Aus­tralian fire­brand Nick Kyr­gios apol­o­gised and said he had been un­well after he stormed off court to loud boos mid­way through his open­ing match at the Shang­hai Mas­ters.

The 22-year-old made an abrupt exit yes­ter­day after los­ing the first set 7/5 on a tie break to the Amer­i­can Steve John­son, hav­ing been docked a point for the sec­ond match run­ning be­cause of his con­duct.

The ATP Tour said it had launched an in­ves­ti­ga­tion and Kyr­gios, sim­i­larly hit with a point penalty in los­ing the China Open fi­nal to Rafael Nadal on Sun­day, said he was “gut­ted” to re­tire.

“I’ve been bat­tling a stom­ach bug for the past 24 hours and I tried to be ready but I was re­ally strug­gling on the court to­day, which I think was pretty ev­i­dent from the first point,” Kyr­gios wrote on Twit­ter.

“My shoul­der started to hurt in the prac­tice to­day, which didn’t help ei­ther, and once I lost the first set I was just not strong enough to con­tinue be­cause I’ve not eaten much the past 24 hours.”

Kyr­gios hit a low point in Shang­hai a year ago when he sim­i­larly left the court to jeers, hav­ing ap­peared to give up in his match against Ger­many’s Mis­cha Zverev. Kyr­gios was con­se­quently sus­pended.

Kyr­gios did look in dis­com­fort with his shoul­der early on in the match against tohn­son. He seemed un­trou­bled by the in­jury when they en­tered the first-set tie break though his tem­per soon got the bet­ter of him.

He went 3-0 up in the tie break but as John­son pegged him back he was irked by spec­ta­tors get­ting up be­tween points.

“What’s hap­pen­ing here?” he asked, be­fore mut­ter­ing: “Ex­actly why I shouldn’t come here.”

Kyr­gios ap­peared to blame the um­pire for fail­ing to get the crowd in line and his day spi­ralled fast when he re­ceived a point penalty.

“What is he do­ing? Is this nor­mal?” Kyr­gios asked some­body in the of­fi­cial area of the arena. “Poor of­fi­ci­at­ing again,” Kyr­gios then com­plained. “Sick of this place.”

John­son won the set and Kyr­gios de­cided he had had enough, shak­ing the hands of his op­po­nent and the um­pire – though not look­ing him in the eye – and pack­ing his bag.

Re­turn to sen­der: Nick Kyr­gios aired his frus­tra­tions be­fore with­draw­ing in China.

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