Copyright Getty Images

Love him or hate him, but Kyrgios is the real deal

At the Australian Open I really enjoy the TV shots of players as they walk along the champion’s tunnel on their way on to centre court. The names from bygone days are on there, winners like Roscoe Tanner, Brian Teacher, Johann Kriek and Guillermo Vilas. My kind of players from my kind of era when grass courts inside fabled stadia, like Kooyong and White city alternated on a wide sward, players wore predominantly white and the big matches were played at 2pm.

In those days a lot of top players gave the Australian summer a miss, it was too far, there wasn’t enough prize money, basically just not enough on the line.

Things are decidedly different in Melbourne come Australian Open time these days though one stark fact remains, it’s now 40 years since any Australian player – Chris O’Neil for the trivia buffs – has won the national singles title.

There’s been some serious contenders like Lleyton Hewitt and Pat Cash in the intervening years of course, but on his display at this year’s open Nick Kyrgios might be the Australian whose name next appears in the champion’s tunnel.

His reinvention as a character has been well documented this past week and things are looking decidedly on the up for the 22 year old with the languid efficient court movement and fluid playing style. Even down to his pink & black triangle patterned shirt and buzz cut hairstyle he’s a stock Australian sports fans are buying.

Kyrgios matches are a prime time TV show in which he is the only star.

Is he a Grand Slam champion in the making?

In the next few years we’re going to find out and there won’t be a grass court or a white tennis shirt in sight.

Photo: Getty Images

No Comments

Leave a Comment

%d bloggers like this: