Nick Kyrgios has been slapped with a hefty fine for spitting in the direction of fans at Wimbledon and has withdrawn from his doubles fixture, in which he was due to play with close mate, Thanasi Kokkinakis.
The controversial Aussie star was made to cough up $A14,400 for his vulgar act, almost double the next biggest fine released on the fines list, Alexander Ritschard being docked $7240.
Watch Kyrgios blow up in his first round clash in the video above
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The $14,000 whack is the biggest fine Wimbledon has seen since fellow Aussie Bernard Tomic’s back pocket was hit with an $80,000 fine for a lack of effort in 2019.
It’s Kyrgios’s second five-figure fine at the All England Club, after copping a $11,500 hit for unsportsmanlike conduct in 2019.
Kyrgios made no bones about the vile act when speaking to reporters moments after the match in which he did it.
“In the direction of one of the people disrespecting me, yes,” he said when asked if he spat towards the crowd.
“I would not do that to someone who was supporting me.”
The hit came as Kyrgios announced he was pulling out of the doubles draw to focus on his tilt at a first major singles title.
The move came as no surprise, with the 27-year-old hinting at the possibility of pulling the pin on doubles in his pre-tournament press conference, in which he took aim at the All England Club for sticking to best of five sets doubles fixtures.
“To be honest, I’m not really looking forward to playing best-of-five sets doubles,” Kyrgios said.
“I think it’s the stupidest thing ever, to be brutally honest. I don’t know why it’s best-of-five sets.
“No one wants to play best-of-five sets doubles, no one wants to watch best-of-five sets doubles.”
It’s fair to say Kyrgios put in a refreshingly un-Kyrgios-like performance in his second-round clash against Serbian Filip Krajinovic overnight.
The Aussie was all class and no frills in his 6-2 6-3 6-1 victory, wiping the 26th seed off the court without a trace of controversy or anger.
He was at his brutal best with 25 aces and just 10 unforced errors to blow a hapless Krajinovic off the court, and he let the crowd know about it after the game, too.
“I just wanted to remind everyone that I’m pretty good,” he said in a post-match interview.
“I just feel like people just don’t give me the respect sometimes because of other things that I do.”
But his performance didn’t relieve him from having to field questions in the post-match press conference about his spitting act from his previous match.
“Why would you be asking me a question about two days ago? Is it because you have no story for today?” he said.
“I just feel like I’m comfortable in my own skin. Some people love to just tear me down. It’s just not possible anymore.
“I just want to give people who watch this press conference or watch my tennis to just believe in yourself, be yourself, don’t be someone else up here either. Don’t just say what you’ve been told to say.
“I couldn’t care less if there is an investigation about me doing that (spitting), to be brutally honest with you. I know what I bring to the sport.
“I’m one of the most important people in the sport. Do you want to speak about that? Nothing to investigate there because it’s just factual.”
Arguably tennis’s most maligned player, Kyrgios said he actually used his hate for the media as motivation to lock in and focus against Filip.
“I’m just really sick of the media right now. They’re just nitpicking all of my matches,” he said.
“So, today was about just being locked in. I joked with them just then, ‘I love that you’ve got nothing to write about today’,” the Aussie star said.
“I just feel like people just don’t give me the respect sometimes because of other things that I do.
“There was just nothing the media possibly could tell me I did wrong today.
“I just know that you can’t possibly ask me anything and stir anything up. And I love it because then you can’t write anything.
“What are you going to say? Nothing today. Dumbfounded, all of you.”
His win sets up a mouth-watering third-round blockbuster against world No.5 Stefanos Tsitsipas, who delivered a not-so-subtle four-word sledge towards the Aussie, following his second-round victory.
“I have a lot of respect for his game, the way he utilizes his talent, the way he really fights … when he wants to,” Tsitsipas said.
But the Greek superstar knows world No.40 Kyrgios will take some beating.
“Nick has more matches than me on this court. He claims to like grass and I think his game is good for the grass,” Tsitsipas said.
“I’m definitely thrilled to be facing him. I respect him a lot on the court, what he is trying to do, although he has been a little bit controversial.
“I think he’s playing good tennis. I’m going to concentrate on doing my thing and paying attention to my own game from start to finish.
“Hopefully I can stay there and do something great, have a great competitive match against him.”