The bitterness between Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic does not seem to be ending anytime soon. At least not from the Aussie's side.
Nick Kyrgios has been the foremost critic of Novak Djokovic and the other players over the Serb's Adria Tour disaster. At one point, Kyrgios even called Novak Djokovic and Alexander Zverev 'potatoes' for partying at nightclubs during the happier days of the exhibition event.
While Novak Djokovic has maintained his decorum and never hit back at Kyrgios or responded to any of his comments, the Serb's army of supporters and followers have constantly been on the Aussie's case.
Recently, Nick Kyrgios was himself found at a nightclub, supposedly breaching social distancing norms. Fans on social media, especially those of Novak Djokovic, were quick to point out what they deemed to be hypocritical behavior from Kyrgios after his rant against the Adria Tour contingent.
But Nick Kyrgios has now come out in his own defense and explained why his situation was different from that at the Adria Tour.
Unlike Novak Djokovic's tour, no new cases emerged from my partying: Nick Kyrgios
For a while, Nick Kyrgios had been quiet on the criticism and allegations of hypocrisy he had received from the media and fans for going out clubbing in his hometown of Canberra. But when Borna Coric, one of the players who was infected with coronavirus at Novak Djokovic's exhibition event, hit out at Kyrgios for his comments, the mercurial Aussie took the opportunity to clarify his actions.
Kyrgios first issued a scathing reply to Borna Coric, questioning the Croatian's intellectual level - just as he had done with Dominic Thiem.
Seeing Kyrgios' harsh words towards Coric, some fans reminded the Aussie of his own actions from last week - when he was spotted at a nightclub with his friends.
That was when Nick Kyrgios seemed to have had enough of what he thought was petty opportunism just to get back at him for criticizing Novak Djokovic. The Aussie explained that Canberra has no active cases of COVID-19, and that his actions were well within the rules laid down by the Australian Capital Territory.
Nick Kyrgios' claim is true, as per the most recently published data relating to the coronavirus spread. The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) had 113 total cases of COVID-19, but none of them are active at this point. The region's strict lockdown restrictions and virus guidelines have proven to be quite successful.
A fan then pointed out that the organization of the Adria Tour was also within the rules of the Serbian and Croatian governments, and that nothing Novak Djokovic or any of the Adria Tour players did was illegal. This is quite true as well; the Serbian Prime Minister had herself released a statement that the onus of the Adria Tour disaster was on her and the Serbian government, and not on Novak Djokovic.
But Nick Kyrgios didn't seem satisfied with the response and stuck to his claim that his own actions were not comparable to those of Novak Djokovic & Co. He went on to elaborate that unlike the Adria Tour, his actions did not lead to the emergence of any new cases in his region.
Another fan then explained that the consequence was not of importance, the precaution was. But Nick Kyrgios was undeterred, and this time came up with a stronger response - that the two situations were nowhere near comparable as some of things at the Adria Tour, including playing basketball with the crowd watching and dancing in a group at nightclubs, were way over the line.
When fans reminded him that we do not yet know the full extent of the consequences of his actions yet, Kyrgios hit back saying that it's been two weeks since the incident and there have been no reports of any new spread in the ACT.
Nick Kyrgios readily participated in this give and take of jibes in his usual browbeat style. And some of the Aussie's claims seem completely legitimate; the situation in Australia and especially in the ACT, where Kyrgios lives, is far better off than that in Serbia or Croatia even before the Adria Tour.
To that extent, the Adria Tour players had a moral obligation, although not imposed by any legal guidelines, to behave more responsibly - as opposed to citizens in the Australian Capital Territory, who can now afford the luxury of going out and having a bit more freedom.
But many believe Nick Kyrgios would do well to keep in mind that a sizable portion of the reported cases have been among people showing mild or no symptoms. And for that reason, it is prudent to follow some self imposed restrictions and cut down the luxury of going out for reasons that can be avoided - like clubbing - until the situation all around is more positive.
Nick Kyrgios has also seen some more allegations of hypocrisy thrown his way for not criticizing his 'buddies' John Isner and Frances Tiafoe enough even though they participated in the All-American Team Cup played in Atlanta - where Tiafoe tested positive for the virus. It is being said that Kyrgios didn't hand out the same treatment to Isner and Tiafoe as he did to the Adria Tour players because the Aussie is good friends with the two Americans.Published 30 Jul 2020, 12:10 IST