Anyone can contribute to The Roar and have their work featured alongside some of Australia’s most prominent sports journalists.
With a game capable of beating any player when on song, Nick Kyrgios says he has no plans to watch the Australian Open draw on Thursday night when his first-round opponent will be revealed.
The 23-year-old was bemused when asked if he planned to watch the draw, conducted at Melbourne Park and televised live.
“I’m not entirely sure what I will be doing but I think there will be more things on than the Australian Open draw,” he said with a laugh.
While Kyrgios won’t be tuning in, plenty of others in the 128-strong men’s field will be in the hope they aren’t drawn to face Australia’s enigmatic two-time major quarter-finalist.
Unseeded at a grand slam for the first time since the 2015 US Open, Kyrgios could conceivably meet defending champion Roger Federer or fellow favourites Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal in the first round.
A quarter-finalist at Melbourne Park in 2015, Kyrgios reached the fourth round last year before falling in a tight four-setter to third seed Grigor Dimitrov.
Kyrgios said there was a simple recipe for success but it still needed to be executed.
“I guess I just have to raise my game a little bit,” the Canberran said.
“I’ve been to the fourth round (of grand slams) so many times, two quarter-finals and I’ve had some tough matches in those rounds.
“I guess I just have to play better at the end of the day.”
Kyrgios said there was plenty for Australian fans to cheer about in the men’s draw, with his Kooyong rival Bernard Tomic back in form and world No.29 Alex de Minaur leading the local charge.
“I think we (Tomic and Kyrgios) can make deep runs at the Australian Open but also we’ve got de Minaur, (John) Millman, we’ve got so many players,” Kyrgios said.
“I think it’s an exciting time for Australian tennis as we’ve got such a wide variety of players.”
Millman, Matt Ebden, Jordan Thompson and Tomic were direct entries, with Jason Kubler, James Duckworth, Alexei Popyrin, Marc Polmans and Alex Bolt earning wildcards.
Australia’s top-ranked player, world No.15 Ashleigh Barty, is the only home-grown women’s seed meaning she’s guaranteed not to run into a top-eight rival until at least the second week.
Barty will be joined in the draw by Daria Gavrilova, Ajla Tomljanovic, Samantha Stosur and wildcards Priscilla Hon, Kimberly Birrell, Destanee Aiava, Ellen Perez and Zoe Hives.