Rafael Nadal and Nick Kyrgios recently announced their withdrawal from the upcoming US Open owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. Both the players posted on social media that they wouldn't be participating in the first Major since the coronavirus-enforced suspension of the tour, landing a huge blow to the USTA.
Yesterday, Nick Kyrgios was interviewed by 'Wide World of Sports' about his motivations behind skipping the US Open. The Aussie talked at length about his decision, and also gave his thoughts on Rafael Nadal's desire to get in more claycourt preparation going into the French Open.
Nick Kyrgios agrees with Rafael Nadal's decision to go straight to the European clay swing
When asked why he isn't traveling to Flushing Meadows this year, Nick Kyrgios replied that this isn't a good time for sports to take place. Kyrgios had also previously expressed solidarity with the Australians and Americans who have been affected by COVID-19, stating that that was one of his reasons behind withdrawing from the US Open.
Kyrgios believes he is not the only player who is worried about the health risks of traveling to the US, and said that he wouldn't be surprised if many others decide to follow his example in the coming weeks.
"I was not too surprised (to see players pull out), after I was the first hurdle to fall. I know a lot of players who did not want to put their health at risk and go to play there," Kyrgios said.
Speaking specifically about Rafael Nadal, the Aussie voiced what most others in the tennis world are thinking: that the Spaniard didn't want to jeopardize his chances at Roland Garros.
"I was not necessarily surprised with Rafael Nadal's decision, since he's more eyeing the French Open," Nick Kyrgios said. "If I was to play, I would go to Europe at this time of the year as well with everything that's been going on."
There had been a lot of talk about Rafael Nadal's schedule after it emerged that he was on the entry list for the Cincinnati Masters. But after the cancellation of the Madrid Masters was made official, Rafael Nadal finally decided he would rather spend the rest of the summer in Europe.
Nick Kyrgios then revealed that, unlike Rafael Nadal, he is reluctant to even play the European clay swing. With the coronavirus cases only increasing every month, Kyrgios hinted that he will sit out of the remainder of the 2020 season and instead spend time with his family and friends.
"Hopefully, they follow all the safety rules" - Nick Kyrgios' message to his colleagues
When asked what he thought about his fellow players who decide to play the American hardcourt swing, Nick Kyrgios issued a warning message about the importance of following safety protocols.
"With everything going on at the US Open, if they intend to go ahead I hope the conditions there are safe. I'm not taking a shot at any of the players who are acting in the right manner, going to the USO. It's a risk for them, so hopefully they follow all the safety rules. I hope the 'bubble' is a success, like the NBA going ahead, if it's something like that I've got no problem at all with USO going ahead," Kyrgios said.
With the likes of Rafael Nadal and Nick Kyrgios out of the US Open, Novak Djokovic will be the top draw at the tournament as he aims to win a fourth title in Flushing Meadows and 18th Grand Slam overall.Published 06 Aug 2020, 15:49 IST