Disbelieving mum fires up angry Kyrgios

Tue Jul 1, 2014 7:07pm EDT
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By Pritha Sarkar

LONDON (Reuters) - When Norlaila Kyrgios checks her mobile phone for messages on Wednesday morning in Canberra there will be a "smiley-face text" waiting for her.

That text from 19-year-old son Nick in London isn't a simple greeting that means 'hi mum' or 'miss you mum'. What it really means is "huh, so much for you thinking I wasn't good enough to beat Rafa Nadal?".

The offspring she had so little faith in sent Wimbledon spinning on its axis on Tuesday when he sensationally toppled Nadal 7-6 (5) 5-7 7-6 (5) 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals on his debut appearance at the All England Club.

If Nadal wanted to blame anyone for the way Kyrgios came out all guns blazing, firing down 37 scorching aces and 70 sizzling winners, he needs to look no further than the Australian wildcard's mother.

"I saw in an interview that my mum thought Rafa was too good for me so that made me a little angry," world number 144 Kyrgios told reporters.

That anger fired up Kyrgios so much that from the moment he swaggered on to Center Court bopping his head to the music blaring out of his pink headphones, he looked like a man possessed.

So what if Kyrgios was playing a rival who:

- Was ranked number one in the world   Continued...

Nick Kyrgios of Australia reacts during his men's singles tennis match against Rafael Nadal of Spain at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, in London July 1, 2014.           REUTERS/Max Rossi