Aussie Bernard says it will be disappointing if compatriot Nick, who missed country’s Davis Cup defeat to USA due to illness, is fit to play Indian Wells
Melbourne: Australia’s two leading stars Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios are at odds forcing new captain Lleyton Hewitt into a peacemaking role after an extraordinary post-script to Australia’s Davis Cup loss to the United States yesterday.
Bernard Tomic of Australia prepares to serve against Jack Sock of the US during their Davis Cup match in Melbourne on Friday. pic/AFP
Tomic challenged the commitment of Kyrgios to the Davis Cup competition after his teammate’s withdrawal from the Kooyong tie with illness and back trouble.
John Isner was too strong for Tomic winning 6-4, 6-4, 5-7, 7-6 (7/4) to deliver the Americans the tie 3-1 and reach the competition’s quarter-finals.
Yet there was controversy during the match when Tomic was overheard during a changeover questioning Kyrgios’s absence from the tie.
While in conversation with team captain Hewitt, television microphones caught Tomic muttering: “Nick’s sitting down in Canberra. Bullshit he’s sick.”
Tomic was also heard saying “that's twice he’s done it”, in possible reference to Kyrgios’s withdrawal from the tie against the Czech Republic last year.
Tomic later did not retract from his comments and questioned the legitimacy of the virus that ruled out Kyrgios if he was competing as planned in an American tournament this week. Tomic said he spoke to his teammate after his loss and Kyrgios told him he was planning to play in Indian Wells, California, this week.
‘In heat of the moment’
Australia’s top-ranked player recalled that a similar situation occurred a year ago when Kyrgios withdrew from the Davis Cup against the Czech Republic.
“He didn’t come to Czech and had stress fractures and somehow played Indian Wells and felt good,” Tomic said at the post-match press conference.
“Now it’s going to be funny for me to see whether he plays.
“If he plays Indian Wells, then he’s definitely lost a little bit of my respect.” Tomic said it was disappointing not to have Kyrgios playing in this weekend’s David Cup tie.
“He’s an amazing player and it would have been important to have him here.”
Hewitt, who came out of retirement for Saturday’s five-set doubles loss to the crack Bryan brothers in Kyrgios's absence, said he did not share Tomic's sentiments.