Mercurial Australian player Nick Kyrgios claimed via social media that the coach and trainer of Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic ‘threatened to fight’ Kyrgios and his doubles partner Thanasi Kokkinakis.
The Australian team was granted a Wild Card entry into the doubles draw of the Australian Open. In the second round, they came up against the top seeded Croatian pair.
Buoyed by the home crowd, the Australian duo pulled off a 7-6(8), 6-3 win over the tournament favourites.
The Croatian pair were not pleased with the behaviour of the home fans during the match.
“They’re pretty loud,” Pavic had said.
“Obviously they cheer for Aussies. It wouldn’t hurt them to show some respect to all opponents, to other players. We saw yesterday also with (Daniil) Medvedev how it was. That’s how they are here. We’re used to that. But like I said, it wouldn’t hurt them to show some respect.”
Kyrgios lost in the second round of singles to second seed Medvedev on Thursday in a match which the Russian had been constantly jeered between serves.
But after Kyrgios and Kokkinakis’ win on Friday, the former alleged the Croatian team’s trainer and coach had a near confrontation with them in the locker room.
“Just letting you know after yesterday’s chop fest in doubles my opponents coach and trainer proceeded to threaten to fight in the players gym,” he wrote on Twitter.
“Tennis is a soft soft sport @TKokkinakis all because I moved and hit them with a tennis ball.”
Just letting you know after yesterday’s chop fest in doubles my opponents coach and trainer proceeded to threaten to fight in the players gym 🥱🥶 tennis is a soft soft sport @TKokkinakis all because I moved and hit them with a tennis ball 😂😂
— Nicholas Kyrgios (@NickKyrgios) January 21, 2022
The Australians will next play 15th seeded pair of Gonzalo Escobar of Ecuador and Uruguayan Ariel Behar.