A year earlier, Novak Djokovic was locked up in a hotel in Melbourne.
Three days before the Australian Open 2023, he will play an exhibition match in front of a crowded stadium this Friday.
Facing him ?
Nick Kyrgios, the sulphurous Australian player.
Put on sale on Tuesday, the tickets left in 58 minutes flat.
However, it was necessary to pay 20 dollars to attend this training match between two players who have fueled many debates lately.
Kyrgios did not fail to point out the irony of the situation, titillating his detractors and the followers of the tennis circuit.
“Nick Kyrgios is bad for the sport!
Wow, what a shame, a national embarrassment!
How dare he fill a stadium, how arrogant,” he wrote on Twitter, probably with a smirk.
Wow Nick Kyrgios is bad for the sport!
Wow what a disgrace, a national embarrassment!
How dare he sell out another stadium, the arrogance https://t.co/Sn37U2nAjv
— Nicholas Kyrgios (@NickKyrgios) January 10, 2023
Defeated by “Djoko” in the Wimbledon final last year, the 27-year-old right-hander signed his most consistent season last year.
But his whims, his challenges or the rants addressed to his clan in the middle of a match continue to tarnish his image.
Smooth, Djokovic is not either.
Last year, the former world number 1 was deprived of the Australian Open for his rejection of vaccination.
His medical exemption, obtained thanks to a positive test for Covid-19, had not convinced the Australian authorities.
He had been held in a detention center for migrants before being expelled from Oceania.
This year, Tennis Australia has therefore taken advantage of the aura of "Djoker" and Kyrgios and placed them on the bill for this charity event.
According to journalist Ben Rothenberg, proceeds from the match and other paid practice matches will be donated to the Australian Tennis Federation Foundation.