Rafael Nadal’s uncle Toni has explained that one of the reasons why Nick Kyrgios lost to Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final was because of his “messy” understanding of tennis. The Australian won the first set on Sunday, but Djokovic responded to take the next three as Kyrgios made several outbursts to the fans and umpire.
Kyrgios was described as “cool and calm” by BBC commentator Todd Woodbridge in the first set, which he won 6-4, but then as the Serbian grew into the game Kyrgios became enraged at his box and it was one of the reasons why he lost, according to Toni Nadal.
“In the decisive moments he was unable to control his anxiety,” Nadal told El Pais. “That, again, degenerated into constant rebukes to his team as if they were to blame for the undesired paths the scoreboard was taking for him.
“The match lacked great brilliance, mainly because there were too many unplayed points. The lack of perseverance of the Australian, especially in regards to maintaining his aggressiveness, revealed the main problem that, in my opinion, his game possesses.
“He has a bad habit of hitting too many balls in any way, basically without paying attention and in a bad position. In today’s tennis, due to the speed at which the ball goes, there is no choice but to look for a good position to have good control. The great players measure their steps well, seek a good position and, from there, try to hit a good shot and increase the chances of victory.
“Nick Kyrgios, with his messy way of understanding the game, is handicapped not so much by what he does with the ball, but by the way he wants to do it. It is very difficult for him to achieve the continuity that requires scoring points. Tennis is a sport of repetition, rather than the spectacular.”
Kyrgios repeatedly shouted at his box when he lost a point to Djokovic, and asked the umpire to remove a fan who he claimed “looks like she has had about 700 drinks”, and was talking to him during points, while his frequent outbursts forced the BBC to apologise several times for his language.
Tim Henman, on BBC’s commentary for the final, agreed with Nadal and believes that the Australian can only blame himself.
“Kyrgios has let himself down,” Henman said. “That dialogue is going to come back and haunt him. Surely it is about accepting responsibility. It’s about Kyrgios going out and executing his game plan to the best of his own ability. He has got in his own way and handed over the initiative to Djokovic.”