Nick Kyrgios has posted a message to Rafael Nadal about their "different personalities" on social media after he received a walkover into the Wimbledon final.
The Australian does not have to even turn up to play a semi-final on Friday at the All England Club after Nadal was forced to withdraw from the tournament on Thursday evening due to an abdominal tear.
Nadal, who was seeking a third successive Grand Slam singles title this year, suffered a reported seven-millimetre tear in one of his abdominal muscles during his epic quarter-final victory against Taylor Fritz. While he managed to practise on Thursday afternoon at SW19, he then decided that he must withdraw.
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For Kyrgios, it has been a stunning run on the famous grass courts, and he now awaits the winner of top seed and reigning champion Novak Djokovic's clash with Britain's Cameron Norrie on Centre Court.
The 27-year-old has had a patchy relationship with Nadal over the years due to their very different styles and behaviour on and off the court. Kyrgios alluded to that in a cryptic message on social media on Friday.
"Different players, different personalities," he wrote on Instagram.
"Rafa Nadal, I hope your recovery goes well and we all hope to see you healthy soon... till next time…"
In poking fun at himself, he then posted a famous childhood photo with the caption "Wimbledon finals" accompanied by a laughing emoji.
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Only in March, Nadal said that unless the ATP took action “something negative” would happen after a Kyrgios outburst.
"I like him [Nick Kyrgios] like a character. But of course, when you cross some lines, then the thing becomes different, no,” Nadal said.
“And the problem is, in my opinion, when you allow the players to do stuff, then you don't know where the line is. And it's a tricky thing.
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“But probably because these situations are happening more and more often, the ATP should review things and make decisions. Not about today's match because I didn't see what happened at the end, so I can’t have an opinion.
“I think Nick had a great attitude during the whole match in terms of fighting spirit, and of course, he has his personality, his character. Sometimes he does things I don’t like, but I respect him because of his different character… different points of view.
“But the most important part, why we are coming here, is to try to play tennis in the best way possible. I think he did. He fought until the end. He played some great level tennis. And that’s the Nick Kyrgios that I probably want to see and the people like to see, no? Because that’s good for tennis.
“And then all that stuff, I hope it was nothing too bad because I wish him the best. But if it’s bad, the ATP need to make decisions to avoid that and stop that because otherwise – even if it’s very unlucky or unfortunate – something negative will happen.”
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Watch daily highlights from Wimbledon at 10pm on Eurosport 2 and discovery+ from June 27, as well as the two singles finals live on July 9 and 10.
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