With Australia’s hopes in the Brisbane International now seemingly pinned on Nick Kyrgios, Aussie legend and three-time Wimbledon champion John Newcombe offered some keen insights on what it will take for Kyrgios to finally realise the keen potential anyone who has ever wielded a racquet has seen from the combustible Kyrgios.
“It’s early in the year and I’d look to see if he is enjoying what he’s doing,” Newcombe said in remarks published in The Courier-Mail. “Also, does he look physically fit, like he’s ready to run for five sets? When he gets up against players who keep him in long rallies he doesn’t win many rallies beyond about eight shots. Then he drops off a lot.That could be fitness. It could be that he’s a flatter hitter of the ball.’’
Kyrgios has been known to make unforced errors in long rallies, netting balls due to the lack of margin-of-error provided by heavier topspin.
His fitness is another issue. His left hip has been hampering him for some time. Kyrgios claims he has been taking better care of the issue, but with him, it is hard to tell exactly what that entails.
He is making no guarantees.
“I know there’s going to be some ups and downs this year, but, you know, hopefully it gets better every year,’’ Kyrgios said.“I had some great moments last year and some tough ones as well, but hopefully things go right.’’
Kyrgios claims that performing well on home courts is not the impediment it seemed to be for Ash Barty, who exited meekly to a much lower ranked player.
“We all obviously want to do well in our backyard, but for me it’s just another week. There’s pressure every week. You got to keep things in perspective,” said Kyrgios.
Newcombe had other insights.
“I hope Nick is asking himself the question, ‘Am I fit enough?’”
“He (Kyrgios) should be thinking, ‘the Slams were terrible – I didn’t do myself justice there.’
“It’s not just about playing one or two five-set matches. A Slam can be seven over two weeks. If you want to do well in the Slams you have to do the physical work.”