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Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury

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Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury (Image: GETTY/EUROSPORT)

Nick Kyrgios further cranked up his rivalry with Novak Djokovic by trolling the Serbian on court and off court on day seven of the Australian Open. The Australian has a public dislike of the world No 1 and as well as questioning his injury against Taylor Fritz, also mocked his trademark celebration during his doubles match alongside Thanasi Kokkinakis.

Walking on to Court 1 to warm up before facing Wesley Koolhof and Lukasz Kubot, Kyrgios turned to the empty stands of the arena and waved before copying Djokovic’s celebration.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion, after victories, has a famous routine in which he puts both hands to his head and lifts them towards the crowd as if throwing something their way.

Djokovic said of the celebration after playing in matches without fans during the coronavirus pandemic: “Look, I’m going to keep on doing it because I just – I don’t know.

“I think its part of the routine. It’s part of also me paying a tribute and a thanks to that match and to the court and to that occasion.”

And Kyrgios did it once more when he returned to the court for the coin toss.

The Aussie doubles team of Kyrgios and Kokkinakis however lost their second-round match 6-3, 6-4 to crash out of the tournament.

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Speaking afterwards, asked about doing Djokovic’s celebration, Kyrgios said: “Just feeling the love. Just trying to spread the good word of the celebration. Everyone loves that celebration. It’s well liked.

“We just banter anyway. When we tweet or when we just do stuff, it’s for fun, you know, like you can’t take it all too seriously. 

“We’re just having some fun. Novak, I’m sure, doesn’t like me and we both have respect for each other, but I don’t like him at all, so it’s fun.”

Kokkinakis added: “We were just having some fun out there really because there was no one in the crowd so we were just trying to enjoy ourselves and kind of get a bit of atmosphere and energy about us.

“It’s nothing malicious, we just like to have some fun. Look, looking around there’s literally just blue, and we’re like, wow, this is tough. But we’re just trying to have some fun.

“I know tennis players are very serious, so I think that’s why we’ve kind of got a bit of energy about us. You’ve got to show a bit of personality.”

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury (Image: EUROSPORT)

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury (Image: EUROSPORT)

Kyrgios was already out of the singles after losing a thrilling third-round tie to world No 3 Dominic Thiem, though he hailed himself proud of his efforts post-match.

But being out of the men’s singles bracket allowed Kyrgios to take to social media to further troll rival Djokovic.

Taylor Fritz, who Djokovic defeated in the third round, posted on Instagram following his loss to the top seed in Melbourne.

The American wrote: “3rd round bot. Really tough way to go out at #ausopen so close to something big after fighting as hard as I could.

“Too tough from @djokernole in the end and I hope his injury is better soon… thank you everyone for all the support. Back to work!”

Djokovic won the first two sets before succumbing to a side injury which required a medical timeout in the third set.

The 33-year-old later admitted he considered retiring from the match and he lost the third and fourth sets before rallying in the fifth for victory.

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury (Image: INSTAGRAM)

After a win he named one of the most special of his career, the defending Australian Open champion cast doubt on his chances of returning for the fourth round to face Milos Raonic after defeating Fritz.

But Kyrgios joked about Djokovic’s injury on Fritz’s post, commenting: “Imma take a medical real quick Fritzy, I’ll be back in 2 hours.”

That came after Fritz raised doubts over Djokovic’s problem, which he said was a muscle tear, insisting: “He was serving unbelievable in the fifth set.

“He was serving two first serves and barely really missing any, hitting the spots, serving faster, harder than he was before in the previous sets. I found it even tougher to return his serve.

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“I expected that if he was really, really injured he wouldn’t have kept playing. I knew that he would come back strong in the fifth.

“I think if you guys all watched the match, looked like he was struggling in the third and the fourth, and he did’’t really look like he was struggling in the fifth. You know, when I hit a winner, he’d kind of, like, pull at it.

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury (Image: GETTY)

“It’s not like – like, he looked fine in the fifth. Let’s be honest. Maybe he fought through it, but I’m happy for him that he had such a good recovery and he’s feeling a lot better, so…”

Kyrgios’ war of attrition with Djokovic continues on from his pre-tournament criticism of the world No 1, after he labelled him a “tool” following his letter of complaint about the players’ quarantine.

Djokovic replied: “Off the court, I don’t have much respect for [Kyrgios], to be honest. That’s where I’ll close it.

“I really don’t have any further comments for him, his own comments for me, or anything else he’s trying to do.”

Which prompted Kyrgios to hit back: “It’s a strange one for me, because, you know, I read his comments, he said he doesn’t respect me off the court.

“I’m, like, it actually would make complete sense to me if he was like, ‘Look, I don’t respect the guy on the court’, because I understand if he doesn’t agree with some of my antics on the court that I have done in the past.

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injuryNick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls ce

Nick Kyrgios continues Novak Djokovic feud as Aussie trolls celebration and mocks injury (Image: GETTY)

“And when we’ve played matches I think I’ve actually been pretty good towards him. But I’m not quite sure how he can’t respect me off the court.

“I feel like I’ve gone about things extremely well, especially during the pandemic I was – I mean, driving around delivering food to people during the pandemic that didn’t or couldn’t get the supplies.

“I was extremely careful about what I was doing. I didn’t want to spread the virus to anyone. Now I’m actually trying to donate meal kits to people that need food. I have my foundation.

“So it’s very strange to me as why he would say he doesn’t respect me off the court. I actually do a lot off the court. But, yeah, he’s a very strange cat, Novak is.

“Heck of a tennis player, but unfortunately someone that’s partying with his shirt off during a global pandemic, I don’t know if I can take any slack from that man. That’s as bad as it gets for me.”



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