Nick Kyrgios lived every working man’s dream by having a complete and utter meltdown at work. He came away from the situation $100,000 lighter for his efforts, but the Australian tennis pro certainly seems to think it was well worth it.
Kyrgios’ fury came in the midst of a loss in the second round of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati (also known as the Cincinnati Masters). He won the event in 2017, but fell in three sets to Karen Khachanov on Wednesday night.
Kyrgios was belligerent with chair official Fergus Murphy all night, and his verbal attacks toward Murphy earned most of his fine. Murphy called Kyrgios for a time violation early in the match and things quickly degenerated to a display that would make even John McEnroe cringe.
The Australian requested a bathroom break, which Murphy denied. Kyrgios nonetheless left the court and smashed two racquets in the corridor below the stands. Upon returning, Kyrgios continued with the verbal barbs.
He later drank water with no small amount of anger and threw it against the side of Murphy’s viewing chair. As Murphy chastised him for the latest addition to his tantrum, Kyrgios insisted that the bottle “slipped” from his hand. That’s probably going to create an incredible serve in his next event. The label from his bottle can be seen sticking to the chair.
The Association of Tennis Professionals announced on Thursday that Kyrgios will be fined $113,000 for his unsportsmanlike conduct. The ATP does not consider the matter closed, and they will investigate if a suspension is warranted.
This is far from the first time that Kyrgios has let a tantrum overshadow his play. In May’s Italian Open (also known as the Rome Masters), Kyrgios was fined $20,000 for tossing a chair onto the court and for verbal threats toward a side judge. He has also battled accusations of tanking, and he admitted to throwing “probably” eight matches in his career.
Nonetheless, Kyrgios’ on-court talent is clear. He entered Wednesday’s event ranked 27th in the ATP men’s rankings, the highest-ranked Australian. Kyrgios is also one of three players to defeat Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic in his first meeting with each.