Nick Kyrgios delights home fans at the Australian Open with more Rod Laver Arena antics as he reaches men’s doubles final with fellow Aussie Thanasi Kokkinakis… but Brit Joe Salisbury suffers defeat in other last-four contest
- Nick Kyrgios is into the Australian Open doubles final with Thanasi Kokkinakis
- The Aussie duo delighted the home support once again at Melbourne Park
- They beat third-seed duo Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos 7-6(4), 6-4
- Wild celebrations at the end saw both end up on the floor of the Rod Laver Arena
Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis are Australian Open finalists after the enigmatic box office act powered into an all-local doubles decider at Melbourne Park.
The Special Ks’ semi-final was promoted to Rod Laver Arena after their giant-killing run on outside courts and the home hopes did not disappoint on centre stage.
Kyrgios and Kokkinakis outlasted third seeds Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 in an hour and 47 minutes on Thursday.
Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios will be in the men’s doubles final at the Australian Open
The Australian pair celebrated wildly in front of home support on the Rod Laver Arena
Showing more focus and restraint than in previous matches on the raucous outside courts, the pair mostly let their irresistible tennis do the talking.
But it would not be a Kyrgios match with at least one blow-up.
The 26-year-old was furious late in the second set after facing two break points against his serve.
Kyrgios let out some expletives at himself, argued with the umpire about the net cord sensor and pleaded for the crowd to stop talking during serves, before smashing a racquet when he dropped the game.
Kyrgios had pleaded with the crowd to stop talking during serves and also smashes his racket
But the pair were able to close out the match by breaking back, with Kokkinakis hitting the winning shot with a classy lob.
‘It’s all about the crowd, the atmosphere, that gets us going and we worry about the tennis second,’ Kokkinakis said.
‘It brings the best out of us and I don’t know if we would have got this result anywhere else.
The crowd on the Rod Laver Arena were boisterous in their support for the home duo
‘I think both of us bring something different, different energy, different sort of charisma on the court, but we just enjoy it and have fun.’
The great Rod Laver, who only turns up for big matches on the court that is named in his honour, watched on from the front row, as did legendary Australian cricket captain Steve Waugh.
The victory sets up an all-Australian final at the Australian Open for the first time since 1980 with Matt Ebden and Max Purcell taking down second seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury 6-3 7-6 (11-9) in their semi-final.
‘Those two are great doubles players and we’re not going to take them lightly,’ Kyrgios said.
Brit Joe Salisbury (right) and his partner Rajeev Ram lost their semi-final earlier in the day