Nick Kyrgios is showing great promise thrilling the crowd at Pat Rafter Arena on Sunday night with a win against American Ryan Harrison to take out the men’s title at Brisbane International.
The Australian third seed won in straight sets 6-4, 6-2 in one hour and 13 minutes.
While it is the fourth ATP World Tour tournament win for the 22-year-old, it was his first on home soil and will take him from 21 to 17 in the world rankings; a boost that couldn’t have come at a better time a week ahead of the Australian Open.
Harrison came out strong in the first set, but Kyrgios maintained his ground and made the most of the opportunities that came his way, winning the first set in 37 minutes with an ace.
Despite wearing heavy strapping on his left knee, Kyrgios seemed untroubled in his movement.
The young Aussie’s hunger for the win was ever clear in the second set, when he took the pressure to another level seeing Harrison double fault. Conceding serve, it was finally a double break that looked to secure the win for Kyrgios, finally sealed with his 17th ace of the game.
After the win, Kyrgios gave credit to his good friend Matt Reid for leading him on to win the title. And while he claimed pre-tournament that he would not be having a full-time coach in 2018, he went as far as referring to Reid as his coach.
“I want to congratulate my coach Matt Reid…he does more than that, he’s pretty much my team,” Kyrgios said.
“He doesn’t get the credit he deserves.”
The player also acknowledged his fans, while indirectly appearing to reflect on some of his less than favourable behaviour in 2017.
“I love playing in front of you guys. Even though sometimes it may not seem that way. But I do,” Kyrgios said to the crowd.
Kyrgios is the second Australian champion in the tournament’s 10-year history to win the Roy Emerson Trophy after Lleyton Hewitt in 2014.