New York: Tennis legend John McEnroe believes controversial Australian player Nick Kyrgios is buckling under pressure and urged the 20-year-old to look to calmer contemporaries to pull himself back in line.
Kyrgios has been given a suspended 28-day ban and fined $25,000 by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) for making lewd remarks about Stan Wawrinka's girlfriend.
Nick Kyrgios. Pic/ AFP
Kyrgios jibed at World No.5 Wawrinka during a match in Montreal a couple of weeks ago saying: "(Thanasi) Kokkinakis banged your girlfriend. Sorry to tell you that, mate."
"He's (Kyrgios) having such issues right now. The pressure's getting to him. As a 20-year-old kid, I did my share of dumb things, inappropriate things at times," McEnroe was quoted as saying by ESPN on Tuesday.
McEnroe's on-court antics earned him the nickname 'superbrat', but the former World No.1 believes Kyrgios can make better use of his energy.
"He'd be well-served to look at the guys like (Rafael) Nadal, the guys that go out there, tremendous effort players. He can't afford to waste as much energy as he's wasting with these sort of off-court comments," he said.
"He's tremendously talented. He's charismatic. He's got a look that's different. He brings something to the table."
McEnroe's advice comes shortly after another great Pete Sampras had a light-hearted poke at Kyrgios.
"Behave, young man," the 14-time Grand Slam champion reportedly told Kyrgios at a promotional event here on Monday ahead of next week's US Open.