Nick Kyrgios is leading an Australian charge at Wimbledon

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Nick Kyrgios is always a dangerous player on grass. (AP)

No. 18 Nick Kyrgios likes the way he and his fellow Australians are playing in the men's singles at Wimbledon.

The 23-year-old is into the third round, along with teenager Alex De Minaur and Matthew Ebden.

De Minaur will next have to face 17-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal while Ebden plays against French veteran Gilles Simon.

“It's awesome. [De Minaur] is going to be a guy that's going to love playing on grass for his whole career," said Kyrgios. "These type of balls, nightmare, so flat. He's a great returner. I honestly think he can cause some damage. I don't think Rafa is going to be liking the ball that's going to come at him constantly for three hours. It's going to be a tough ask for him, but I think he could definitely cause a little bit of discomfort. He's got a lot of good guys around him.

 "Ebden, he's a guy that grew up on grass. He's comfortable on it. Beat [David] Goffin first round. Never easy. He's looking confident.”

WATCH—Daily Serve from Day 5 at Wimbledon:

Kyrgios will go up against Kei Nishikori, who has been injured but reached the final of the 2014 US Open. Though the Aussie has lost all three matches against Nishikori, on hardcourts and on grass, all three matches were pretty close. The last time they played, in Madrid in 2016, Nishikori beat Kyrgios 6-3 in the third.

“Incredibly tough. Kei is a guy I've never had a win against before,” Kyrgios said.  “Grass is probably his least favorite surface. But he's capable on all surfaces. He's a nightmare. He's a great returner. Takes time away.”

Kyrgios has a good record at Wimbledon, and he even stunned Rafa in the fourth round in 2014—when he was just 17 years old. That year he reached the quarterfinals, and then the round of 16 in 2015 and 2016.

But in 2017 he was injured and fell in the first round. Kyrgios agrees that he still has problems finding the right competitive intensity.
 
“It's hard for me to find the balance sometimes. I think when I'm in a calm place with a lot of energy, I think that's when I play my best tennis,” Kyrgios said. “I think yeah, it could help my game."

Marion Bartoli recently took shots at both Kyrgios and Gael Monfils, questioning both players’ work ethics and mentalities. Kyrgios laughed it off at first, but he later made a statement saying that both he and Monfils don’t care what she has to say.


Strokes of Genius is a world-class documentary capturing the historic 13-year rivalry between tennis icons Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. It is timed for release as the anticipation crests with Roger as returning champion, 10 years after their famed 2008 Wimbledon championship – an epic match so close and so reflective of their competitive balance that, in the end, the true winner was the sport itself.

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