Nick Kyrgios has come under fire from Australian tennis veteran Pat Cash, who accused him of “gamesmanship” and “cheating” and claimed that the Canberran’s antics at Wimbledon have brought tennis to its “lowest level.”
Cash, the 1987 Wimbledon champion, was referring to Kyrgios’ bitter rivalry match with Stefanos Tsitsipas on Sunday.
The 27-year-old triumphed in four sets, but Tsitsipas later referred to him as a “bully” with a “evil side” and urged other players to unite and pressure Kyrgios to alter his behaviour.
Tsitsipas was fined $14,700 (US$10,000) for smashing a ball into the audience and nearly hitting a spectator, and Kyrgios was fined $6,000 (US$4,000) for verbally berating the umpire during the match.
Kyrgios, who demanded Tsitsipas be forfeited after the Greek player smacked a ball into the audience during the match, denied any wrongdoing and referred to Tsitsipas as “soft” if he couldn’t handle the situation on the court.
Pat Cash concurred with Tsitsipas’ stance while speaking on BBC Radio.
“It was absolute mayhem. “He’s brought tennis to the lowest level I can see as far as gamesmanship, cheating, manipulation, abuse, aggressive behaviour to umpires, to linesmen.
“He was lucky to even get through the first set, he should have been defaulted in the first set.
“Something’s got to be done about it – it’s just an absolute circus. Is it entertaining? Yeah, possibly. It’s gone to the absolute limit now.”
Kyrgios’ actions have become customary at major competitions; his third-round fine at Wimbledon marked his second in three contests.