Nick Kyrgios, Novak Djokovic, Todd Woodbridge, Sports Sunday


Australian tennis great Todd Woodbridge has made the bold plea that Nick Kyrgios can win his first Grand Slam singles title at this year’s Wimbledon, trumpeting the threat he poses and saying ‘anything can happen’.

A factor in the Aussie’s favor ahead of the next edition, which is due to start on June 27, is that up to four of the men ranked in the top 10 are in doubt to compete.

Rafael Nadal is suffering from a foot injury, Alexander Zverev underwent ankle surgery this month, and Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev are banned from playing due to the ban imposed on Russians and Belarusians.

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But the prospect of Kyrgios securing his maiden title is still highly unlikely, given Novak Djokovic’s danger and the 27-year-old’s Wimbledon record.

A 2014 quarter-final against Milos Raonic is the deepest Kyrgios has had at the All England Club.

“Nick is actually trained and focused on this season so it’s a good start to the grass season. If there’s a player on the pitch outside of Novak who can play well enough and beat everyone on turf, it’s Nick,” Woodbridge said on Nine’s Sports Sunday.

“So it’s about, ‘How does he handle the wait as he walks into this one this time? “.

“He is a legitimate force and a chance to go far at Wimbledon.”

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Kyrgios’ 2021 Wimbledon campaign produced wins over Ugo Humbert and Glanluca Mager, and a loss to Felix Auger-Alisassime.

His greatest Wimbledon triumph remains his 2014 victory over Nadal in the round of 16, when he outlasted the legendary Spaniard in four sets.

“It will depend on his draw. It’s important,” Woodbridge said when asked to predict Kyrgios’ fate at Wimbledon in 2022.

“We don’t want him to appear in a section that Novak might be, which is a possibility.

“But I think a semi-final is realistic this year.

“And if he gets to the semi-finals and his body is fine and his head is still on his shoulders, anything can happen.”

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