Nick Kyrgios has made significant progress in cleaning up his divisive reputation at the Australian Open this week.
The mercurial 22-year-old has breezed into the third round at Melbourne Park, overcoming Rogerio Dutra Silva and Viktor Troicki with minimum fuss.
Yet to show any symptoms of having one of his notorious meltdowns, Kyrgios has impressed with his apparent boost in maturity.
The Aussie is set to face his first real test of the tournament against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Friday, but the man on the other side of the net may not be his only concern.
Just when every minor detail of Kyrgios’ campaign seemed to be going smoothly, tournament officials believe they have reason to be keeping a close watch next time he takes to the court.
Like most players, the Canberra-born star brings a regular support crew to each of his matches, usually including his mother, father and siblings.
However, while the courtside presence of his family is undoubtedly positive in most circumstances, Kyrgios needs to have a word with one of them.
His older brother, Christos, has drawn widespread criticism on social media for wearing sponsored attire during the first two rounds of the tournament.
The shirts promoted sportsbet.com.au and featured the phrases ‘Chill Bro’ and ‘Nick Nick Boom’ as part of an agreement between the betting company and Kyrgios’ cam
Gambling advertising is a touchy subject in general, but with the offending attire potentially in breach of Australian law, tournament director Craig Tiley wants to get involved.
TOURNAMENT OFFICIAL'S RESPONSE
“He (Christos) is entitled to wear what he wants to wear,” he told Melbourne radio station 3AW, per Fox Sports Australia.
“Is it ideal that he wears that form of overt marketing like that? No. We’re yet to have a conversation …to find out more.
“In the middle of the match when these things occur it’s not so straightforward to address it.
“That’s why we’ll be organising to have a conversation about it.”
REASON BEHIND THE CONTROVERSY
No legislation relating to commercial agreements is straightforward, but nonetheless, Kyrgios and his brother likely have some explaining to do.
To further complicate matters, the money earned from the sponsorship will go to charity, according to the original source.
The shirt promotes a company other than the official betting partner of the host broadcaster, while it also breaches the prohibition of gambling advertisements during live sporting events before 8:30pm.
With Kyrgios looking capable of progressing deep into his home Grand Slam this year, let’s hope this doesn’t act as too much of a distraction.
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