Seven-time Grand Slam winner John Mcenroe feels that 2022 Australian and French Open winner Rafael Nadal didn’t want to face his semi-final opponent Nick Kyrgios and hence pulled out of the match. The American tennis star feels as Nadal wasn’t 100% healthy he didn’t want to go head to head against his Australian counterpart.
“Rafa being the fighter that he always is, decides to play and wins. Was it going to get significantly worse? I don’t know the answer to that. Could he have played? He beat Taylor Fritz at 80%. He was serving at 100mph most of the match," Mcenroe said.
“[But Kyrgios] is dominating Wimbledon in a lot of ways. His play… some of the goings-on, his history, his talent…do you really think Rafa wanted to play him at 80%? Something tells me he didn’t want to do that.”
Kyrgios also talked about feeling disappointed about not facing Rafael Nadal in the semi-final as the Spaniard had to pull out of the tournament because of health reasons. He said, “Honestly my first feeling was a bit of disappointment. My energy was so focused on playing him and tactically how I'm going to go out there and play, the emotions of walking out there, all that type of stuff.”
“But, you know, it wouldn't have been easy for him to do that. I'm sure that a lot of his team members and himself, there would be a part of him that wanted to play, for sure. He barely lost a match this year. He wanted to probably go for all four. So it wouldn't be easy,” he continued.
The Aussie then discussed the importance of playing the semi-finals as it mentally prepares for the next game. “Obviously at a Grand Slam, you want to have those matches. I think in a way, exactly right what you said, the competitive juices, you want to have those going, the adrenaline.”
“That's just something that I'm going to have to go into the final without that semi-final kind of experience,” said Kyrgios. “But that's okay. I'm going to take every positive. I get to rest my body a little bit. It's not bad going in there feeling fresh.”