The Aussie youngster has had a rough time of it. He has the exclusive title of being tennis’ one and only ‘bad boy’.
And some of the incidents he’s been involved with have been regrettable. Sledging Stan Wawrinka by claiming that countryman Thanasi Kokkanakis ‘slept with [his] girlfriend’ was up there. As was the behaviour – described as a ‘lack of best efforts’ – which resulted in a $16,500 fine from the Shanghai Masters.
But to claim that he’s already a wasted talent or a ‘disgrace’ to tennis (as he has been branded in much of the mainstream media) is a stretch.
I believe he is another victim of the need for news, the need to make something out of nothing.
Athletes find themselves in an unenviable position, where they must be entertaining, whilst being some kind of saint-like role model, before they’ve even stepped out onto the field of play.
Not many people could deny that Kyrgios is entertaining. So would they prefer him to blend into the bland obscurity of the vast majority of media savvy tennis stars? No. Because then they’d have nothing to write about.
But that’s not going to stop them feigning moral outrage at his antics.