Acapulco, Mexico: Rafael Nadal accused Nick Kyrgios of lacking respect “for the public, the opponent and himself” after a stormy defeat to the Australian firebrand at the Mexico Open.
Kyrgios survived three match points to beat top-seeded Nadal 3-6, 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (8/6) on Wednesday and reach the quarter-finals.
However, 17-time major winner Nadal was furious with Kyrgios who at one stage complained of being sick, served underarm late in the match before cupping his ear to the boos of the crowd at the conclusion of the second round tie.
“He is a player with huge talent and could be winning Grand Slams or fighting for the number one ranking,” said Nadal.
“But he lacks respect for the public, the opponent and for himself.”
Kyrgios, ranked 72 in the world, hit back at Nadal.
Image: Australian tennis player Nick Kyrgios (L) argues with court judge during a Mexico ATP 500 Open men’s single tennis match against Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal in Acapulco, Guerrero state, Mexico on February 27, 2019.