Fans get to see the best version of Nick Kyrgios when he plays on John Cain Arena at the Australian Open, according to Mats Wilander.
It is likely that the home favourite made a request to play on his favourite court for his third round tie with third seed Dominic Thiem, given that it is arguably the match of day five.
A raucous atmosphere inside the second biggest show court at Melbourne Park cheered him to victory over Ugo Humbert, and Wilander admits it does tend to create a better atmosphere for Aussie players.
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“I’m not sure what it’s like this year, but in the past, if you had a ground pass, you could go in and watch matches on that court”, said the seven-time Grand Slam champion and Eurosport pundit.
On Rod Laver, there was a lot of corporate sponsors and there wasn’t a lot of an 'Australian vibe' in there, it was more international.
“I know Nick likes to play for the young kids, and the people that buy a ground pass.
I’m assuming now he’s built up such a good feeling with that court and the same fans keep coming back, because they know they’re going to get the best Nick Kyrgios that we ever see is on John Cain Arena.
“It should be a great match, the match of the day for sure.”
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Kyrgios has won nine out of his 11 singles matches on the newly-named John Cain Arena, but Wilander says he’s fortunate his likely request could be fulfilled - as he will not get his own way against the top two seeds.
“He’s lucky he’s playing Dominic Thiem because if he played Rafa (Nadal) or Novak (Djokovic), he would not be playing on John Cain - I don’t think they’ve ever played out there,” said Wilander.
Having needed five sets to beat Humbert, Wilander thinks the fiery Australian will have his work cut out against the Austrian, who’s one of the favourites to win the tournament.
“Tough match, hopefully physically Nick Kyrgios can get back, obviously Dominic Thiem knows that”, he said.
“Dominic Thiem is so fit and is serving well. I have a hard time thinking that Nick Kyrgios can win that match if it goes for a long time.”
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