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   Jul 05

Wimbledon 2015: Revenge-seeking Richard Gasquet says nice guy Nick Kyrgios shows respect off court

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Nanjing Night Net

Nick Kyrgios has been accused of being disrespectful this week at Wimbledon but his next opponent insists the “nice guy” of Australian tennis doesn’t carry that attitude into the locker room.

Frenchman Richard Gasquet insists he won’t be fazed by the 20-year-old’s antics when they square off on Monday, but says his cocky bravado doesn’t transfer off the court.

“I have no problem with that,” Gasquet said about Kyrgios’ on-court behaviour.

“I think it’s great for the game. He has a good personality. He’s fun to watch on the court. He’s nice off the court – that’s the most important. He respects the players off the court. He’s always talking in the locker room. I think he’s a nice guy. On and off the court he’s a good player for tennis.”

The No.21 seed says he’ll never forget the day Kyrgios, a 19-year-old wild card at the time, ended his Wimbledon dream in 2014, admitting “it’s revenge” he’s after this time around.

Nine match points – that’s how many the Australian saved on his way to announcing himself on the world stage with the biggest upset win of his career against the then 13th seed – at least it was for another four days before he toppled world No.1 Rafael Nadal.

Regardless of what Kyrgios went on to achieve, the reality of Gasquet’s tournament coming to an abrupt end in the second round isn’t something he’s moved on from in a hurry, vowing to exact revenge when the pair meet again in the fourth round on Monday.

“It was an incredible match,” Gasquet said of last year’s five-set loss to the then No.144.

“Very tough because I had nine match points and I couldn’t do it, so it was a big match. Of course it was tough to lose. He played incredible. Of course after that he won (against) Nadal. It was a big thing for everybody. Of course it’s revenge. I played him this year in final in Estoril but it was on clay. It’s much different.

“Of course last year, even if I lost, it was a match we never forget, me and him. And for sure because it was his first match he won against a good player, I was top 10, and me, when you are losing with nine match points it’s very difficult … of course it was a tough match. When you are with nine match points, it’s always difficult to forget.”

Gasquet was on court during Kyrgios’ victory against No.7 seed Milos Raonic on Friday, unable to witness the warning sign the Australian sent out in the four set victory against the Canadian.

However the 29-year-old insists he knows what’s coming with a likely quarter-final berth against Stan Wawrinka on the line.

“Most important is return of serve,” Gasquet said.

“He has one of the best serves in the world. He has a big forehand. He’s a tough opponent because he has such a great serve. And to return him on grass, it’s very difficult. That’s why he’s one of the best players on this court. He won [against] Raonic. I didn’t see the match, but I imagine he played and served incredible.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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