Novak Djokovic is accused of playing mind games with Australian Open title rival Nick Kyrgios


Novak Djokovic is accused of playing mind games with Australian Open title rival Nick Kyrgios by snubbing the tennis bad boy in TV interview

  • Novak Djokovic is accused of playing mind games with rival Nick Kyrgios
  • Djokovic didn’t mention Kyrgios when asked about tournament heavyweights
  • Woodbridge thinks the Serb is trying to get into the Aussie bad boy’s head
  • The pair meet on Friday in a one-off match before the Australian Open 

Aussie tennis legend Todd Woodbridge has accused Novak Djokovic of playing mind games with Nick Kyrgios after the Serb superstar snubbed the Aussie’s chances at the Australian Open.

Kyrgios, 27, has been in superb form over the past 12 months and has raised expectations that he will become the first male tennis player since Lleyton Hewitt to bring a grand slam back to Australia.

Aussie tennis legend Todd Woodbridge has accused Novak Djokovic (pictured with Kyrgios after the 2022 Wimbledon final) of playing mind games with Nick Kyrgios after the Serb superstar snubbed the Aussie’s chances at the Australian Open 

When Woodbridge asked Djokovic who the biggest threats in the tournament were, the 21-time grand slam champion didn't mention the outspoken Australian

When Woodbridge asked Djokovic who the biggest threats in the tournament were, the 21-time grand slam champion didn’t mention the outspoken Australian

However, when Woodbridge asked Djokovic who the biggest threats in the tournament were, the 21-time grand slam champion didn’t mention the outspoken Australian.

Woodbridge explained that that he thinks Djokovic neglected to mention him on purpose and is trying to get into Kyrgios’ head before the pair meet again.

‘I asked him about who he thinks the contenders are, and he went through (Rafael) Nadal and (Jannik) Sinner and (Casper) Ruud and I said ‘no Kyrgios?’, Woodbridge said on Nine’s Today Show.

Woodbridge explained that that he thinks Djokovic neglected to mention the Aussie on purpose and is trying to get into Kyrgios' head before the pair meet again

Woodbridge explained that that he thinks Djokovic neglected to mention the Aussie on purpose and is trying to get into Kyrgios’ head before the pair meet again

‘He just smiled and said ‘of course there’s Nick Kyrgios and we know what he can do’. Then he just moved on and he said ‘I hope he’s ready, he hasn’t had a great preparation.’

‘And he laid a few things out for Nick to think about… which is a bit of locker room talk and jargon out getting in each other’s heads and they like to do that those two, it makes some good drama for us all.’

The Aussie star and the Serb master will face off at the Rod Laver Arena at 6:30pm AEDT on Friday in a one-off match on the eve of the Australian Open.

The Aussie star and the Serb master will face off at the Rod Laver Arena at 6:30pm AEDT on Friday in a one-off match on the eve of the Australian Open

The Aussie star and the Serb master will face off at the Rod Laver Arena at 6:30pm AEDT on Friday in a one-off match on the eve of the Australian Open

The rematch of the 2022 Wimbledon Final will also mark Djokovic’s first return to Melbourne since his controversial exclusion from the Australian Open 12 months ago.

Djokovic was at the centre of a diplomatic storm in January last year, when he was deported for not complying with the vaccination restrictions that were in place back then.

The Serb, who was unvaccinated against Covid-19, had his visa cancelled twice after arriving in Australia ahead of the Australian Open.

Kyrgios has long championed Djokovic's return to Australia, calling for fans and authorities to welcome his rival back

Kyrgios has long championed Djokovic’s return to Australia, calling for fans and authorities to welcome his rival back

Kyrgios has long championed Djokovic’s return to Australia, calling for fans and authorities to welcome his rival back.

‘I hope he’s here, for the sport, we just saw one of the legends leave the sport – Roger [Federer] – and that’s some shoes no one is ever going to fill,’ the Australian told the Herald Sun in October.

‘So I think while Novak and Rafa [Nadal] are still around, we need these type of players to be at the Grand Slams.

‘People of Australia, we love the Australian Open […] we want to see the best players in the world there.’

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