Nick’s Twitter serve says it all about Australian Open players’ COVID whinge

Ian Bushnell 22 January 2021 20
Nick Kyrgios

Nick Kyrgios said what most Australians were thinking. Photo: Tennis ACT.

Who would have thought that Canberra’s Nick Kyrgios would morph from tennis brat and national embarrassment to statesman of the game in such a short space of time?

It seems like only yesterday that we were ready to disown Kyrgios for his on-court antics despite his prodigious talent with the racquet.

Now our Nick, with a hint of maturity, a more balanced perspective and a laser-like turn of phrase has summed up the national mood about spoilt tennis players and COVID-19 quarantine rules in a way that can’t be misconstrued by his fellow Australians.

“Djokovic is a tool,” Nick served up on Twitter, in a masterful display of how to use the social media platform.

Such richness of meaning in so few words. We all got it, but the Joker may be wondering how his list of demands for Australian Open players, including being moved to private homes with a tennis court, could go so wrong.

Of all the countries in the world to pull such an entitled stunt, Australia, which has avoided the worst of the pandemic through disciplined government-led measures and whose people still have little regard for those claiming special privileges, was probably not a great choice.

Just going ahead with the Open is a huge risk for the Victorian Government, which has had to endure barbs that it has turned the state into a prison to keep COVID-19 at bay.

While the lockdown measures crushed the virus and allowed the Boxing Day Test to proceed with a crowd, returning some normality to the summer, the Open was always going to be a more difficult event to manage, with the army of players and their entourages, officials and media flying in from across the globe and countries being ravaged by the virus.

Some were also going to test positive for the virus, initiating lockdowns for them and their contacts.

It isn’t great for elite athletes whose lives are run by a crazy calculus of ball hitting, gym regimes, diet control and sleep management.

But if the rules that have kept us safe are good enough for us, then they are good enough for a bunch of professional tennis players, some of whom have stellar incomes and live in a gilded world far removed from the lives of the people they are paid to entertain.

It is admirable that sporting organisations such as the football codes, Cricket Australia, and now Tennis Australia have done the work to keep sport alive as we oscillate between outbreaks, lockdowns and quasi-normality.

Part of our national psyche, it’s been restorative, and we have been treated to some phenomenal experiences, such as the Indian Test victory in Brisbane.

It is true that the Australian Open now can’t offer a level playing field, with some players unable to train as normal.

But they knew the rules, or at least their managers did, and they should take a look outside their tennis tour bubble to see the wreckage and carnage being wreaked around the world and gain a little perspective.

Playing here is a privilege, as is being able to watch them. As sportspeople, they should understand that they have to play within the tournament rules.

There is so much more to life than tennis, something our Nick seems to have grasped, which ironically has probably made him a happier player and most certainly more endearing.


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20 Responses to Nick’s Twitter serve says it all about Australian Open players’ COVID whinge
Katerina Teaiwa Katerina Teaiwa 6:05 pm 24 Jan 21

Go Nick!

Jennifer Gee Jennifer Gee 8:45 am 23 Jan 21

Some really spiteful comments on here. He was very young when he entered the limelight and acted out as many young teens do when propelled into stardom. Nick is now an adult and has matured into a lovely young man. He is entitled to his opinion - as is everyone else. So far what he has said about the Tennis Open situation is on point.

Alan Davey Alan Davey 6:35 am 23 Jan 21

Very loose has he grown up yet more show than go onthe fringe

Warren Brown Warren Brown 5:45 pm 22 Jan 21

What a true grub !

russianafroman russianafroman 4:51 pm 22 Jan 21

The only reason people know about Nick is because the media buys into his deliberate fire-bombing. Despite seeming like an unintelligent person, he is actually very intelligent. He knows how to get under the media’s skin, so they make articles about him. The best thing would be to ignore his ranting and have his accounts deleted. CANCELLED.

Marion Rae Marion Rae 12:15 pm 22 Jan 21

Nice one Ian

Barry Finch Barry Finch 12:07 pm 22 Jan 21

"Statesman" Your kidding right.

Doug Hearne Doug Hearne 11:38 am 22 Jan 21

A tool is appropriate word for anyone who disrespect others with the virus that is floating around good on you Nick for pointing the Joker out

Tracey Crump Tracey Crump 11:08 am 22 Jan 21

Remember Lleyton Hewitt, who seemed fully occupied with being a grade A tool for the first few years of his career, and then grew up, and turned into an apparently decent human, and respected ambassador for his sport? Lets not rule that out for Nick...unless of course you're happier just to keep bashing someone who seems to be making a really positive contribution of late?

Merv Zeller Merv Zeller 11:07 am 22 Jan 21

Who made him statesman?

Acton Acton 10:30 am 22 Jan 21

The hypocritical Victorian government is endorsing this elitism by allowing international tennis players in, but closing borders to ordinary Victorians simply wanting to return home.

Phil Andrews Phil Andrews 9:25 am 22 Jan 21

‘Statesman’, ‘our’, Ian Bushnell what are you smoking...?

Ted Bell Ted Bell 8:44 am 22 Jan 21

WTF ... Statesman ... Pffffffft

Melissa Hobbs Melissa Hobbs 8:30 am 22 Jan 21

Go Nick!

Mel Casao Mel Casao 8:28 am 22 Jan 21

Mark Casao Good ol' Nicky

    Mark Casao Mark Casao 12:23 pm 22 Jan 21

    Mel Casao lol this article is hardly mentions him 😂😂

Debbie Dixon Debbie Dixon 8:08 am 22 Jan 21

Statesman? Really?? And definitely not ‘my’ Kyrgios!!!😏😏

Shane Jasprizza Shane Jasprizza 8:04 am 22 Jan 21

I think you and I have different dictionaries.

Jack Horne Jack Horne 8:01 am 22 Jan 21

Statesman is a loosely applied title in this case.

    Adam Jovanovic Adam Jovanovic 10:26 am 22 Jan 21

    No its not this is Australia sport players are who we worship along with alcohol

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