Damage was already done for Kyrgios, says Chiller

Fri Jun 3, 2016 11:47pm EDT
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By Ian Ransom

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australian number one Nick Kyrgios was unlikely to have been selected for the Rio de Janeiro Games due to his behavior even if he had wanted to play tennis for his country, according to Olympic team boss Kitty Chiller.

Chef de mission Chiller also criticized Tennis Australia for backing Kyrgios, saying she found it "difficult" to accept that the governing body could regard the hot-headed 21-year-old an "athlete of good standing".

Kyrgios withdrew his name from consideration for Rio on Friday and blamed the Australian Olympic Committee for "unfair and unjust treatment" after a row with Chiller over his conduct.

Chiller rejected Kyrgios's comments and said the AOC had reached out to the player, asking him to respond to a letter about their concerns.

"He was sent a letter, as were two other people, asking him to basically please explain and he chose to respond in this way," Chiller said of Kyrgios's withdrawal in a TV interview on Saturday.

"If Nick had have chosen to respond to this letter, that would then go to the full AOC executive to determine (his selection for Rio).

"My personal opinion, I think the damage was done."

After being publicly upbraided about his behavior by Chiller last month, Kyrgios bowed out of the third round of the French Open with a string of code violations, including one for yelling at a ball-boy.   Continued...

Australia's Nick Kyrgios bites his shirt during his third round match against Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych at the Australian Open tennis tournament at Melbourne Park, Australia, January 22, 2016. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files