Nick Krygios is a name that is popular in the tennis hemisphere for a lot of wrong reasons. When talent meets petulance, you have a union called Nick Krygios. His tennis ability has never been in doubt. He is only the third player, after Dominik Hrbaty and fellow Australian Lleyton Hewitt, to have beaten Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic the first time he played each of them. But his attitude problems continue to overshadow his conquests in tournaments. Tantrums, slurs and controversies have become pathognomonic of tennis matches that involve Nick Krygios.
In news that will fail to surprise the average tennis fan, Krygios has been slapped with a suspended 16-week ban from the ATP Tour following the conclusion of an investigation into his explosive second-round loss at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati last month. The Australian will be decorated with a record fine of 113,000 US dollars (approximately £90,000) that rightly rewards his undisputed feat of eight offences during his match with Karen Khachanov, including verbally abusing umpire Fergus Murphy and spitting towards the official.
Krygios has a proven track record of controversies. Dating back to 2015, at the Rogers Cup, Krygios generated controversy for insults he directed at his opponent, Stan Wawrinka. After a point, Krygios, speaking aloud but not directly to Wawrinka, said: “Kokkinakis banged your girlfriend. Sorry to tell you that, mate”. Microphones also picked up Krygios saying under his breath that Wawrinka, 30 at that time, banging 18-year-olds”. After the match, Wawrinka stated he found the comments “unacceptable” and urged action to be taken against Krygios.
Krygios was fined $13,127 and given suspended penalties of $32,818 and a 28-day ban, pending further breaches by the ATP, after he claimed he apologised to Wawrinka, though this was later denied by Wawrinka himself.
Nick’s mother, Nill, shut down her Twitter account several hours after this incident after personal criticisms were levelled at her. Nill Krygios indicated that her son’s insults had been made in retaliation. Nill claimed that Wawrinka accused her son of “faking an injury” during a previous match between the two players.
In October 2016, Krygios was fined $32,900 (on top of an earlier fine of $21,659—$13,127 for lack of effort, $6,563 for verbal abuse of a spectator, and $1,969 for unsportsmanlike conduct) and banned for eight weeks for ‘lack of best efforts’ against unseeded Mischa Zverev in the second round of the Shanghai Rolex Masters. He threw the match 6–3, 6–1, in 48 minutes, at one point asking the umpire, “Can you call time so I can finish this match and go home?”
When later asked during a press conference if he thought he owed the fans a better effort, he responded: “What does that even mean? I’m good at hitting a tennis ball at the net. Big deal. I don’t owe them anything. If you don’t like it, I didn’t ask you to come watch. Just leave.”
His attitude eventually cost him endorsement deals with Malaysia Airlines after they ended their partnership with Krygios.
Krygios has openly stated that he “does not love tennis” and has a greater interest in basketball. He openly critiqued his dedication to the sport after his exit at the 2017 US Open to fellow Australian John Millman by stating that he is “not dedicated to the game at all.”
The way things are going, Mr. Nick Krygios might continue to donate his hard-earned funds to charity the ATP.
Nick Krygios is like the proverbial leopard that never loses its spots. Even a ‘bleach’ composed of fines, punishments and bans have failed to wash away his spots. He has gone from glory to glory by racking up punishments along with match points on the Tennis court.
It is also beautiful to note that, since the ATP have realized that their bans can only ban Krygios from matches, but not from undesirable behavior; they have decided to take things up a notch by making it mandatory for Krygios to agree to continued support from a mental coach during tournaments and also seek extra help from a specialist in behavioural management before the end of the year.
The initial ban is spiced with a further fine of 25,000 dollars (approximately £20,000), which will kick in if Krygios commits a similar offence within a six-month period. Whew! That must be tough for Krygios. Imagine going 6 months without spinning rackets like rockets or spitting at officials. It won’t surprise me if Krygios eventually makes an advance payment of $25,000 to the ATP.
Krygios was charged with having committed aggravated behaviour under the player major offence provision in the ATP code, and an investigation by Gayle David Bradshaw, the tour’s executive vice-president, rules and competition, concluded that was proven.
An ATP statement read: “The investigation found a pattern of behaviour related to Krygios’s verbal abuse of officials and/or spectators in the past 12 months that constitutes a violation.”
The six-month period will begin the Monday after Krygios accepts the ruling. The 24-year-old, ranked 27, has five working days in which to lodge an appeal should he wish to do so.
If you think Krygios would have succeeded more in the martial arts, kickboxing or the WWE; rather than basketball, then drop your comment in the comments section.
Written by Animashaun Daniel.
Sources include Wikipedia and independent.co.uk