Nick Kyrgios believes Pat Rafter “has absolutely zero idea” about his and Thanasi Kokkinakis’ great camaraderie with most fellow players on tour, after the Australian tennis great said that players are upset with the duo regarding their behavior. Kyrgios called Rafter “clueless” about what happens in the ATP locker room.
Speaking of doubles tennis and the Kyrgios-Kokkinakis pairing specifically, Rafter said that most players are unhappy with the way the doubles duo conduct themselves on the court. Kyrgios and Kokkinakis, who are the defending Australian Open men’s doubles champions, are known for their crowd-pulling antics on the court.
Former World No. 1 Rafter called the situation “a bit of a circus” during his appearance on a recent episode of the Australian Open: The Happy Slam podcast.
“It’s an interesting one that is, because the players are really upset about it,” Rafter said when asked about doubles tennis and the Kyrgios-Kokkinakis duo.
“I don’t know how that operates with them and doesn’t really bother me either way. It’s a bit of a circus…Doubles is a great event, it’s a lot of fun, and it helps you with singles, but it’s not where it’s at. But at the same time, it’s entertainment.”
Elaborating on the ‘entertainment factor’ in doubles, Rafter did highlight that Kyrgios and Kokkinakis often create drama that indeed leads to more ticket sales and attracts more crowds to doubles matches. However, he is not convinced whether or not it is worth upsetting other players, who he feels are miffed with the doubles duo.
“If they create drama, create ticket sales, and they create people watching, then good on them, but at what expense, I don’t know. The players are really upset. Are you supposed to understand the underwritten rule that that’s not how you behave when you do?” Rafter expressed.
Kyrgios reacted to Rafter’s thoughts on what the locker room thinks of himself and Kokkinakis, calling out the two-time US Open singles champion and 1999 Australian Open doubles champion for his comments.
“He would have absolutely zero idea on what the locker room thinks. Me and kokk have great relationships with most of the players on tour. Guy is clueless,” Nick Kyrgios wrote on Twitter.
For the aces and winners listen to ‘Australian Open: The Happy Slam’ podcast and Pat Rafter’s take on what the locker room thinks of Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis @9wwos @braceyjames #AusOpen
APPLE: https://t.co/Wo3yZtvABh pic.twitter.com/Ohz1bTl1I1
— Craig Gabriel (@crosscourt1) January 10, 2023
He would have absolutely zero idea on what the locker room thinks 🤣 me and kokk have great relationships with most of the players on tour. Guy is clueless.
— Nicholas Kyrgios (@NickKyrgios) January 11, 2023
Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis won 2022 ATP Fans’ Favourite Doubles Team award
Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis were voted the Fans’ Favorite Doubles Team of the Year during the 2022 ATP Awards. The tennis fan community has divided opinions over the same, with many fans expressing their dissent at the Australian duo being awarded the honor.
The doubles team of Kyrgios and Kokkinakis had a stellar 2022 season, winning two titles, including the Australian Open, and also qualifying for the ATP Finals.
Kyrgios recently reflected on sharing a successful year on the doubles circuit with his good friend Kokkinakis and admitted that, while they always aimed to produce good results, they never expected to qualify for the ATP Finals as a team.
“Me and Thanasi never thought we were going to be here at the end-of-the-year finals,” Nick Kyrgios expressed. “We always thought we could do some good things together, but to put a year consistently like this, we played maybe six or seven events or something. So, yeah, the experience has been cool.”
The Aussie team will now enter this year’s Australian Open as defending champions of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in their careers.