Australian tennis star Nick Kyrgios has pulled out of the Tokyo Olympics, announcing his move in a social media post.
- Australia’s Nick Kyrgios says he knows he may never get a chance to go to another Olympics, after pulling out of the team for Tokyo
- Kyrgios withdrew from selection for the Rio Olympics in 2016 after a feud with then-Chef de Mission Kitty Chiller
- But he was selected for Tokyo, before retiring from a third-round match at Wimbledon with an abdominal injury
Kyrgios, who retired from his third round match at Wimbledon with an abdominal injury, said it was a decision he did not take lightly.
Posting just hours after Olympic officials announced that the Games in Tokyo would go ahead without spectators following a surge in COVID cases, Kyrgios said the lack of fans influenced his decision.
“It’s been my dream to represent Australia at the Olympics and I know I may never get that opportunity again,” he said.
“But I also know myself.
Kyrgios withdrew his name from selection from the Rio Olympics in 2016, after a feud with then-chef de mission Kitty Chiller, who said his behaviour suggested he did not “understand what it meant to be Australian”.
However, the Canberra native was picked for Tokyo after taking most of 2020 off due to the COVID pandemic.
He returned in the Australian Open, losing a five-setter to Dominic Thiem in the third round, before skipping the French Open in May.
Kyrgios showed some trademark form and shotmaking at Wimbledon before retiring hurt in his third-round match against Felix Auger-Aliassime with an abdominal injury.
In his statement, Kyrgios said he “wouldn’t want to take an opportunity away from a healthy Aussie athlete” ready to represent the country.
“I will also take all the time I need to get my body right,” he said.
Tennis Australia has confirmed, however, that it will not be an Australian who replaces Kyrgios in the Olympic tournament, with the International Tennis Federation choosing a replacement based on rankings.
More to come.