Sports

Nick Kyrgios on Novak Djokovic, message to media, fans, teases Australian Open match, ratings


Nick Kyrgios has continued his plea to media and fans, urging everyone not to go so hard on world No.1 Novak Djokovic.

Djokovic, a nine-time Australian Open champion, is fighting to remain in Australia after arriving in Melbourne claiming to have received a medical exemption before his documentation was revoked.

The 34-year-old is being held at an immigration detention hotel in Melbourne ahead of a court hearing on Monday to challenge the decision to cancel his visa.

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“I’m not siding [with Djokovic], the guy is a human – I just want him to be treated like a human,” Kyrgios said on his No Boundaries Podcast.

If a fellow Aussie was in Serbia and they were in a similar state, would we want one of our fellow Australians treated like this? No.

“Would we expect our 20-time Grand Slam champion to be treated like this? No, we wouldn’t.

“He’s not even being treated like a human anymore.”

While Kyrgios is no stranger to prior controversies with Djokovic – he famously labelled the world No.1 a “tool” last year – he said it was important to remember the Serbian star’s contribution to Australia, including his donation to the bushfire appeal in 2020.

“He’s done a lot [for Australia]. When we had the bushfires, he was supporting us,” Kyrgios added.

“Most of these normal people who are talking s–t, they didn’t do s–t for the bushfires.

“I’m sure some of these people who sit on their coaches and comment all day – if they were in his position – they wouldn’t give back at all.

“When we needed help, he was so keen to help.”

Kyrgios also teased the idea of facing Djokovic at the Australian Open if he’s allowed to remain in the country.

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“This will be sick for him to play after all of this, in my opinion as an athlete, I love a story like this in an athlete… it will be pretty good to see him,” Kyrgios added.

“Imagine this… fourth-round [Australian Open] at Rod Laver Arena, Kyrgios-Novak.

“It would be the highest-rated tennis match… it would be insane. Every match [of Djokovic] will be one of the most-watched.

“It’s good for the sport, we need fans. Tennis needs fans, views and more eyes on the sport.

“There’s going to be heaps of people watching, probably the most-watched Australian Open if he’s playing.”

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