Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Kyrgios smashes racket, advances to China Open

Kyrgios smashes racket, advances to China Open

Nick Kyrgios smashed a racket after losing the first set, sang a song while relaxing during a changeover, and then advanced to the China Open quarterfinals.

The eighth-seeded Australian rallied to beat Mischa Zverev 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 Wednesday, finding some degree of redemption for his ill-tempered, suspension-earning performance against the German last year in Shanghai.

Kyrgios said he found his rhythm after losing the first set and smashing his racket, choosing at one point to sing along with the stadium soundtrack.

"Obviously, didn't have a great one last year. Obviously, got suspended after that," Kyrgios said. "I just wanted to go out there and redeem myself a little bit from last year."

Kyrgios missed the end of the 2016 season after being suspended by the men's tour and fined $25,000 for "tanking" a match and insulting fans during a second-round loss to Zverev at the Shanghai Masters. The ATP said Kyrgios was sanctioned for "conduct contrary to the integrity of the game" following an investigation into his behavior.

Kyrgios said his latest victory was more a statement about his playing ability than anything.

"I just wanted to prove to myself how much I have improved," he said.

Up next for Kyrgios is Steve Darcis, who overcame Dusan Lajovic 6-3 6-4.