It is no secret that Nick Kyrgios absolutely detests World Number 2 player, Rafael Nadal. However, recently, in the wake of his controversial match against Karen Khachanov, Kyrgios has taken on a policy of ‘If I’m going down, I’m taking you with me’. This seems to be mostly directed to Nadal, who he has often criticised for taking too long between serves.
Now, the Australian tennis player has taken to social media to call out the ATP on the subject of the shot clock. According to his Instagram video, where he compared the shot clock timings, he seemingly took 28.22 seconds, while Nadal lingered on for 41 seconds.
During his match against Karen Khachanov, which he lost, Kyrgios dragged Nadal’s name into his rant. He fumed at umpire Fergus Murphy, “You’re telling me Rafa plays that quick every service ball? That’s hilarious bro, hilarious. If Rafa plays that quick I’m retiring. Retiring from tennis. Absolute rubbish… disgrace.”
“Get me some footage of Rafa playing that quick, that game. If you can find any of that I’ll shut my mouth and never speak again. I guarantee you’ll find none of that, none of it.”
Kyrgios was mad about the fact that Rafael Nadal was not as frequently warned about the shot clock.
When the shot clock rule was enforced, Nadal was one of the biggest critics of the move. The Spaniard is of the opinion that trying to speed up the match will affect the quality and the dramatic factor.
Speaking to Reuters, Nadal said, “In terms of the sport, depends. If you want to see a quick game without thinking, well done.”
“If you want to keep playing in a sport that you need to think, you need to play with more tactics, you want to have long and good rallies, then of course you are going the wrong way.”
“But seems like sometimes is only about the business, so… I can’t support this, no. Because I don’t feel the matches that stay for the history of our sport went that quick.”
However, Nadal was not alone in his stance against the shot clock, in fact, World Number 1, Novak Djokovic was not a fan either.
The fact that Nadal is actually allowed to take more than the regular shot clock time between serves (it is proven by Hawk-Eye stats) definitely does not help. ATP seems just generally weak at inforcing rules when it comes to players they need to be attractive
— Raoul Ruberti (@raoulruberti) August 16, 2019
“Look, I’m not completely against it,” the Serb admitted to Reuters. “I feel like they should have reached out to players before they make an official decision, before they announce it.”
“By not doing that, they show how respectful they are of us, which is unfortunate.”
“I understand the whole mechanics behind it, the motives, I would say. But it has to be in line with the respect towards the tradition of the game.”