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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday, August 3, 2022

 
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Nick Kyrgios shares how he's remained highly motivated following his run to his maiden major final at Wimbledon.

Photo credit: Rob Carr/Getty

After reaching the Wimbledon final last month, Australia’s Nick Kyrgios hinted that he might have had issues with motivation as he played smaller events on the tour – if he had won the tournament.

“I feel like if I had won that Grand Slam, I think I would have lacked a bit of motivation, to be honest,” Kyrgios said. “Coming back for other tournaments, like 250s and stuff, I would have really struggled. I kind of achieved the greatest pinnacle of what you can achieve in tennis.”

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But Kyrgios lost to Djokovic in four sets, and with his motivation in tact in the United States, the Aussies has already picked up his second doubles title of 2022, and now he’s moved into the second round at the Citi Open, where a showdown with Tommy Paul looms.

Tennis Express

Kyrgios says that these days, he’s playing for a lot more than just himself, and that realization has enabled him to keep his motivation on high.

“I'm playing for a lot more than myself, and I feel like I'm just in a totally different mindset,” he said on Tuesday, after his 6-3, 6-2 takedown of American Marcos Giron. “I think a couple years ago, after having a great Grand Slam result, I think I would have struggled, as you said, to find motivation, obviously probably a bit more selfish. But now I feel like I had some time off in Bahamas, but I was still forcing myself to train every day. Coming to these tournaments in shape and ready to go.”

The 27-year-old, who improved to 22-7 on the season, is feeling confident in his abilities as the summer season in North America kicks off. It feels like Wimbledon, rather than quell his ambition, has had the opposite effect.

“I'm having a great year,” he said. “I think if Wimbledon had points, I think I'd be around top 15, top 20 in the world. I definitely feel like I'm playing that level of tennis. If not top 10, top 5 at the moment.”

Kyrgios said that his trip to the Wimbledon final, which he still regrets losing for myriad reasons (including financial ones), has shown him what his possible for his tennis.

“To have that opportunity and come up short wasn't easy for me to stomach,” he said. “Obviously another couple million dollars would have been nice to me and my girlfriend, but obviously just to have that accolade, I think no one can say nothing. I think, at the end of the day, if you have a Wimbledon championship under your belt, no matter what result you have after or before, you have achieved that, you have achieved the highest thing.”

He goes over the details of his four-set loss to seven-time Wimbledon Djokovic, displaying a newfound respect for the achievements of the Big 3, and a palpable belief in his own abilities to continue to be a thorn in their collective side.

“It was hard,” he says of the loss to Djokovic. “I feel like a Grand Slam final doesn't come around so often for us normal players. Obviously Federer, Nadal, Djokovic played a ton of Grand Slam finals, but that was like the golden opportunity I felt for me. Going up a set as well.

“There are so many things I would have done differently. I think now that I have digested that match, but I'm doing all the right things to put myself in that position again. I think I'm doing that, and my whole team is helping me achieve that goal. I think we all know that it's possible now. I don't think we thought it was possible to contend for Grand Slams, but now it's a genuine thing. I think all about motivation and we are on the same page.”


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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As he heads into the second round at the Citi Open, the current World No.63 seems intent on producing an encore to his best Grand Slam performance to date. Good for Nick Kyrgios, and good for men’s tennis.

“Sometimes people play a slam final or win a Grand Slam and they struggle for the next six months, but I feel like I don't want to be one of those players. I want to be one of those players that rides with it and continues to play well,” he said.

 

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