'He's Got His Health To Take Care': Tiley Casts Doubt On Kyrgios Australian Open Return

'He's Got His Health To Take Care': Tiley Casts Doubt On Kyrgios Australian Open Return

by Nurein Ahmed

Nick Kyrgios is a major doubt to play at the 2024 Australian Open after the tournament director Craig Tiley issued a pessimistic update regarding the local drawcard.

The year's first Grand Slam next season is set for a historic Sunday start on January 14, less than two months from now. Kyrgios, who recently honored his temporary working role as a pundit for Tennis Channel, is gearing up to play in the tournament but has not formally declared his return date.

The 28-year-old has endured a harrowing 2023 season due to knee and wrist injuries which restricted him to just a single appearance all year. Despite undergoing knee surgery and taking preventive measures to curb wrist pain, Kyrgios has not recovered fully.

Despite appearing in the main draw list in a number of ATP events and exhibition tournaments in the second half of the season, Kyrgios was forced to withdraw from all of them. And now Tiley has likely thrown cold water on any hopes that tennis fans held in seeing the Australian maverick back.

"We have spoken to Nick, and he obviously wants to do the best he possibly can to give him the best chance to play in January … Nick’s position will be determined closer to the event."

Kyrgios's participation can not be determined at this time according to the 61-year-old tennis executive. He further stated that his countryman is focused on the bigger picture, which is to attain fitness that will enable him to play out an entire season, and not merely rush to play one home Slam.

However, Tiley noted that Kyrgios will be in Melbourne in January and should not be downbeat amid his recent tumble in the rankings. The one-time Wimbledon finalist is unranked and will need a wild card to compete at next year's first major if he is fit to play.

"I think whatever gets him the best chance to progress during the year, we have wildcard exchanges with the French and Wimbledon, so there’s an opportunity to really help an Australian player not just have one tournament to go into but several, so we’ll weigh that all up to make a decision – we’ve got wildcards to do that."

"Whether he’s playing, whether he’s doing something else, Nick will be here in January and to get him to play will be great, but we’ve got to take it as it comes and he’s got to take care of his health … because he’s not just got January, he’s got the entire year (ahead) too."


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