A mentally weary Nick Kyrgios says he will switch off tennis completely ahead of Wimbledon after admitting he “didn’t want to be out there” for his first-round loss to Stan Wawrinka at the Queen’s Club.
Kyrgios never got going against the French Open champion, going down 6-3 6-4 before conceding he felt uncomfortable the whole time during the 49-minute flame out.
The 20-year-old, who struggled with an elbow injury in the lead-up to the French Open, was also noticeably under the weather in Tuesday’s loss, coughing and spluttering in the heat.
“I just felt uncomfortable the whole time, really. I’m not feeling great,” Kyrgios said.
“I almost found it difficult to get myself engaged and didn’t want to be there.”
When asked if it was just the flu or whether it was a bigger-picture issue, Kyrgios replied: “I think it’s a bit of both. I have been battling mentally a bit.”
Kyrgios has already flown over a friend, while his father, Giorgos, will arrive next week as he attempts to get his head straight before Wimbledon, admitting he has no immediate plans to schedule any exhibition matches next week.
“It’s tough at the moment, like I say,” he said.
“(I’m going to) not think about tennis, turn off all tennis channels, delete my ATP app, and just not think about tennis for a week or so.”
Wawrinka suggested the youngster was playing mind games with the media, saying there was no way he would shut out tennis in the fortnight before a grand slam.
“I think he’s saying a lot of things every day, so it’s quite interesting for journalists to hear that,” Wawrinka said with a smile.
“I’m sure he’s not going to switch off. I’m sure he will be ready for Wimbledon, because if he switches off two weeks of tennis, then he can go home and not play Wimbledon.
“It’s coming up, so you need to be ready if you want to play well.
“When I read his interview, it’s always funny.
“When I read before the match he was ready, excited for the challenge, and now he was sick.
“So I’m just saying he’s saying a lot of things, and I think it’s always interesting as a player to read what he’s saying and how his mind working.”
When asked if he thought Kyrgios was playing games with the media, Wawrinka had only praise.
“I don’t know. I think he’s enjoying his time. He’s a really talented player,” he said.
“He is the future of tennis.”