Todd Woodbridge has hit out at tennis stars Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios, saying their public Davis Cup spat should have been discussed behind closed doors.
Woodbridge was critical of Tomic after he first suggested mid-match that Kyrgios was faking an illness to miss Australia’s eventual 3-1 loss to the United States in Melbourne with a virus, before he continued to air his grievances in the press conference.
“I thought, well that will get dropped once he comes off the court, and he didn’t,” Woodbridge told SEN Radio.
“I was really surprised like everybody to hear that from him.
“You get through those moments, they are locker-room moments, they’re not television moments and they’re not press-conference moments.”
Kyrgios later fired back on Twitter, telling Tomic he would not have his back anytime soon.
“That disappointed me most,” Woodbridge, who won the Davis Cup in 1999 and 2003, said.
“That’s the inexperience of youth. That didn’t need to happen. You don’t need to do that, you need to get in a room, look each other in the eye and get it out and about and then the problem is solved.”
The perfect opportunity for that could come next week at the Indian Wells tournament.
Woodbridge believes the discussion may need to be facilitated by Lleyton Hewitt, however he is not confident any advice offered by former players such as himself will be heeded.
“They’re not great listeners at this point in their career,” he said.
“And that comes down to age, youth – they think they have all of that experience and they’re still learning. I made those mistakes at the same age.
Woodbridge also supported the decision for Kyrgios to skip the tie, after the 20-year-old developed ulcers around his mouth and experienced fatigue as a result of the virus.
Those comments were backed up by Kyrgios’ Davis Cup teammate John Peers, who said he was “a little” disappointed by Tomic’s mid-match comments.
“But I think Bernie just got a little heated in the moment but it all calmed itself down,” he said.
“I think Lleyton made the right decision to begin with. Nick came down to do a fitness test and according to medical staff didn’t get through it.”
Meanwhile Woodbridge’s calls for a meeting between the pair were also backed by former Davis Cup captain Wally Masur, who was forced to drop or suspend both players at separate times last year.