Nick Kyrgios has doubled down on his claim he will retire if he wins a Grand Slam next year, saying years of intensive travel have left him “exhausted”.
Kyrgios enjoyed the best Grand Slam run of his career when he finished second to Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon this year, while also reaching the last eight at the US Open.
However, the Australian questioned his future in the sport earlier this week, telling reporters in Dubai: “Hopefully I can win a Slam and just retire.”
Speaking to Eurosport, the world No. 22 insisted the remark was serious, saying his private life has suffered due to his time spent traveling to compete in ATP Tour events.
When asked if he would really end his career if he won a first major singles title, Kyrgios replied: “Honestly, I probably would.
“Especially from Australia too, there’s so much travel, so much time away from family, so much time away from friends.
“You just miss milestones in the family, you just don’t have a normal life, really. No other tennis player who isn’t Australian understands that.”
Kyrgios believes few athletes can match the sacrifices he has made during his career, citing the strain caused by long periods away from his home country.
“It’s easy for a European or American player to lose or win a tournament and then you take a five-hour flight home and spend a week there before the next event,” Kyrgios said.
“Whereas as an Australian you do travel blocks of four to seven months. I honestly don’t think that’s healthy.
“No other real athlete in the world does this, in any sport, by doing seven months alone.
“Honestly, I’m exhausted. It’s just stressful. The more you win, the more success you have, the more demands you have off the pitch. People expect more from you.
“People are like, ‘why are you complaining about this?’ It’s not what they think. You live in a hotel suitcase, it’s not like you’re on vacation.
“You have to go to the tennis courts and practice. The lifestyle is pretty vigorous. If that happens, I probably would [retire]to be honest.”
Kyrgios has only reached the last eight of the Australian Open once, and heading into the next edition of his home slam, the 27-year-old is less than enthusiastic.
Asked if he would feel refreshed when the Melbourne major kicks off next month, Kyrgios said: “Probably not. There’s a bit of excitement, but it’s probably 95 per cent stress. , 5% excitement, to be honest.”