Nick Kyrgios has laughed off Pat Cash’s suggestion that he deletes his Twitter account in order to reach his full potential as a tennis player.
Cash on Monday said he believes Kyrgios has the natural talents to be a grand slam champion, but only if he stops reading newspapers and interacting with his 157,000 followers.
He’s advised Kyrgios to instead spend time working harder on the practice courts.
But the controversial 21-year-old seems unlikely to take up the advice, after he took to Twitter to reply just hours later.
“Haha ‘ditch social media’ – can people keep their opinions to themselves please. Leave me alone … This is my last tweet for you Cashy,” Kyrgios posted with two laughing emojis before signing off by blowing a kiss to the former Wimbledon winner.
Cash said his advice will get Kyrgios soaring up the rankings and contending for titles according to Cash, who underwent a similar revolution – albeit in the pre-internet days.
“Everything that wasn’t involved in me improving as a tennis player was a distraction to me,” he said.
“So I just focused on being the best I could be. That (meant) working hard.”
Twitter has proven a regular pitfall for Kyrgios, who has used the platform to sledge countryman Bernard Tomic, Australian Olympic team boss Kitty Chiller and, most famously, AFL star Tex Walker.
“Enjoy your life but just don’t get involved in having arguments with Aussie Rules football players and stuff like that who really have no freaking clue what it’s like to be out there on your own, around the world playing the best athletes in the world,” Cash said.
Like Kyrgios, Cash was viewed as a wild child when he burst onto the scene in the early 1980s and he feels a sense of kinship in the maligned young star.
“That’s why I feel really sympathetic to him,” Cash said when asked if criticism early in his career cut deeply.
“I’m probably the only player on earth who can have an understanding of where he’s at and what he’s been through and what he’s going through.
“He needs to learn just to roll with it.
“It’s amazing how he polarises so many people – that’s the way he is, his personality, his character.”