Nick Kyrgios is undeniably a crowdpleaser if not a universally popular one.
While Roger Federer has won over the tennis world with his incredible skill and endearing persona, the 22-year-old knows a thing or two about getting spectators off their seats.
Kyrgios can arguably execute many of the same shots for which people love the Swiss, but another side of his game seems to be stalling his career.
The Australian riles up certain fans with his occasionally passive performances, most of which are followed by an equally bizarre post-match interview.
His strange media conference after bowing out of round one at Wimbledon in July summed up what has been a difficult year for the World No. 21.
Kyrgios conceded he was only “60, 65 per cent” fit going in the third major of 2017 and his honesty was met with widespread condemnation.
The two-time Grand Slam quarter-finalist has since strung together a run of form to contest finals at both the Western and Southern Open and China Open.
Much to Kyrgios’ disappointment, the latter event saw him fall to World No. 1 Rafael Nadal in a rather meek straight sets loss.
It was a stark reminder of how far the youngster has to go before he can be considered anywhere close to fulfilling his huge potential.
Kyrgios was always likely to endure a rough patch following such a sombre end to the tournament, but nobody could’ve predicted what he’s just done at the Shanghai Masters.
Locked in a tense battle with Steve Johnson on Tuesday, Kyrgios and his opponent were giving the crowd plenty to cheer about.
However, after dropping the opening set by the narrowest of margins in a tiebreaker, the Australian opted to retire from the match, seemingly for no reason.
Watch the bizarre end to the match in the video below.
It’s nothing we haven’t Kyrgios do in the past – in fact, it’s exactly the kind of behaviour that puts him in the bad books of some tennis fans.
Check out what some have had to say about the incident.
With no specific reason given for his abrupt exit, we’ll have to wait and see if Kyrgios explains his logic.
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