Nick Kyrgios has admitted that he knew he wasn't fit enough to play Wimbledon after being forced to retire from his first round match against Pierre-Hugues Herbert on Monday. Kyrgios has been struggling to recover from the left hip injury that forced him to pull out of Queen's Club last month and he was advised by a doctor not to compete at Wimbledon.
Kyrgios out of Wimbledon in opening round
But the 22-year-old had reached at least the fourth round in all three of his previous Wimbledon appearances and wanted to give it a shot at his favourite Grand Slam. After losing in the second round at both the Australian and French Opens this year, Kyrgios's miserable 2017 continued as the world number 20 lost the first two sets 6-3, 6-4 against Herbert before deciding to call it quits due to the nagging injury.
Kyrgios unable to ride out hip pain
“I knew I was in trouble. I have been feeling my hip ever since I fell over at Queen's; I was doing everything I could to help it, but just not enough time. I just wasn't 100 percent. I spoke to the doctor before the tournament started. He was leaning towards me not even playing. [Wimbledon] is my favourite tournament. I do well here every year. So it's tough for me to go out there and pull out. It's not the easiest thing for me to do”, the player said.
Kyrgios, then ranked 144th, burst onto the scene at Wimbledon in 2014 when he defeated then world number one Rafael Nadal en route to the quarter-finals. But from the moment he stepped onto Court Three wearing long white leggings under his shorts, Kyrgios didn't look comfortable.
“I thought I could win. Obviously probably not against him, but some opponents if I played them today, I probably still could have won”, he said. “I could feel the hip a lot. It was hindering my performance a lot. My preparation wasn't great. I knew I was hurting. I played a couple practice matches at Boodles. I wasn't going very hard. I knew I was going to struggle”.
Conservative approach to hip problem
Kyrgios prefers not to remedy his physical issues with a trip to the operating table but is likely to have a scan this week to determine whether the hip has been aggravated by his decision to play Wimbledon. “I will probably get an MRI tomorrow. Hopefully get an injection or something, do rehab, and get healthy”, he continued. “I don't think anyone wants to go down the surgery route. I would do everything possible to avoid it. I'm obviously a little bit scared. But I don't think I need it at the moment.'
Herbert will face fellow Frenchman Benoît Paire for a place in the third round.