'I couldn't look at a tennis court', Kyrgios resets during layoff

  • Tennis
  • Saturday, 14 Nov 2020

FILE PHOTO: Australian Open - Fourth Round - Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia - January 27, 2020. Australia's Nick Kyrgios reacts during his match against Spain's Rafael Nadal. REUTERS/Issei Kato

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Nick Kyrgios was already considering taking a year off from tennis before the COVID-19 pandemic and the shutdown of the sport provided him with the "perfect" opportunity for a reset.

The world number 45 last played a competitive match in early February in Acapulco after deciding to remain at home in Australia when the circuit resumed in Europe and North America.

The 25-year-old, who has previously said that he does not have a passion for tennis, said he was considering a lengthy spell away from the game after seeing a psychiatrist before the start of the season.

"I was thinking maybe it was time for me to just take a year off," Kyrgios said in a typically frank interview in Saturday's Sydney Morning Herald.

"I couldn't look at a tennis court. I had no happy feelings. I had no desire to be out there. I had no motivation. I had no need for growth out there.

"I was just going through the motions. It wasn't making me happy. If anything it was decreasing my energy. It was a negative impact on my life."

The "unfortunate circumstances" of the global health crisis could not have suited him better, Kyrgios said.

"This time has been perfect," he added. "I've had it off where I can completely reset and dabble in a couple of areas where my passion was, be back in my community, be back in my home and just get a complete reset. That's what I was thinking about doing."

Kyrgios once said he would quit tennis altogether at the age of 27 and, while not ruling out an early retirement, thinks he will probably play on longer.

"I feel I still have plenty more in the tank," he said.

"I could play past that if I wanted to. We'll see. Someone could call it tomorrow, you know what I mean? Something can happen where you don't want to play any more. I wouldn't say I'm putting a number on it at the moment."

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Pritha Sarkar)

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