US Open 2017: Nick Kyrgios drops F-bomb, denies it, smashes racket, then loses
The controversial Aussie player is out at the US Open after a colorful first-round match
Nick Kyrgios is a tremendously talented tennis player. Nick Kyrgios doesn't know how to be a tennis player. You could say either of these statements and be correct. The No. 14 player in the world lost to John Millman in the first round of the US Open on Wednesday, killing the enthusiasm surrounding him after an impressive appearance in Cincinnati (where he defeated Rafael Nadal on the way to a finals showing).
Kyrgios did what Kyrgios does throughout the match. He was battling a shoulder injury throughout the match, one that required treatment, but the treatment only served to exacerbate just how poorly he was playing. Kyrgios also unloaded a quality F-bomb in the second set, and was warned for the language in the linesman. When he tried protesting the warning while being treated, the linesman was having none of it.
Kyrgios isn't strictly wrong, it is hearsay, in the sense that everyone heard him say it. Kyrgios later lost a point after smashing his racket after the loss, the third racket that he's smashed this year.
The meltdown isn't new, and Kyrgios seems to realize these mistakes after he makes them. He was contrite in his press conference, and solemn at times. "I keep letting people down," he said. "I don't know." Kyrgios also pointed out the dichotomy between when he's playing well and when he's playing poorly. "In Cincy I played basket two hours before Ferrer," he said. "I ate ice cream, ever day a milkshake. Here, I tried. I don't know man." He also complimented his coach, Sebastian Grosjean, for whom he has always had strong words. "My coach is incredible. So dedicated. I'm not good enough for him. He deserves a better athlete than me."
The problem with all of these sentiments: They're just words. Kyrgios has had these breakdowns on the court time and time again, to the point that people roll their eyes when they see them. If he advanced then he would just be a passionate player, but there need to be results to justify that title. As it stands, he's losing more and more fans because people feel like he just doesn't care. Since making the Round of 16 in the French Open, Kyrgios has gotten swept out of Wimbledon in one match and suffered a meltdown at the US Open, also in the first round. He also blew a two-set lead in a second-round match at the Australian Open.
Kyrgios is entirely too talented to have this keep happening to him, which is why the tennis world is so frustrated. Hopefully he'll come back in 2018 a stronger player, because if next season goes at all like 2017 has (did) for him, then Kyrgios is going to have a hard time maintaining any fans in the future.
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