Australian Open 2023: Nick Kyrgios can play at Rod Laver Arena despite winning a record at John Cain Arena

He has an incredible 12-3 record at John Cain Arena but Nick Kyrgios is happy to play away from his unofficial home pitch as he eyes his first major win.

Nick Kyrgios says he’s ready to graduate from his unofficial home court, the John Cain Arena, to take center stage – but Australia’s No 1 hopeful at Melbourne Park admits he’s not feeling ‘fresh’.

Kyrgios, 27, has an impressive 12-3 record at John Cain Arena – he’s been 6-1 there since 2019 – but it would be a bold move for tournament organizers to give Rod Laver Arena ticket holders the chance refuse to see last year’s Wimbledon finalist box office specialist.

In years past, Kyrgios has made official requests to play at the John Cain Arena, where he dubbed last year’s crowd a “zoo” after creating an intangible energetic lead to defeat Liam Broady 6-4, 6: 4, 6: 3 to destroy.

But Kyrgios was then set to play at RLA, where he fell to Russia’s Daniil Medvedev, while No. 3 Dominic Thiem tried in vain to move his Round 3 match against JCA’s Kyrgios in 2021.

“It doesn’t matter to me anymore which pitch I play on,” Kyrgios said on Saturday.

“I’ve played so many games on the biggest pitches in the world over the past year.

“I’ve always had a little soft spot for John Cain Arena. I had so many great memories of this place.

“The crowd is so loud and so much fun. I might want to play my first round on this course (but) if it’s Rod Laver then I’m fine.

“I feel extremely at home on every court I play on now. The audience in Australia is incredible. The energy is second to none.”

Kyrgios revealed his US Open chances last year have been hampered by tournament organizers who have consistently scheduled him as the last game of the night.

“I couldn’t sleep before 3 or 4 a.m. every night, which was incredibly hard,” said the quarterfinalist.

While fellow countryman Alex de Minaur is enjoying the pressure of playing at home, Kyrgios said it could be overwhelming.

“I came in here as a wildcard at the Australian Open maybe eight or nine years ago. Now to see how my career has progressed, to get to a point where everyone expects me to win and go far is a good feeling,” said Kyrgios.

“But there is also a lot of stress. I see it everywhere, on social media, everyone is talking about it.

“How do you feel about the Australian Open? You are one of the favourites. It’s hard to just focus on what I have to do.”

Originally published as Australian Open 2023: Nick Kyrgios is allowed to play at Rod Laver Arena despite winning a record at John Cain Arena Australian Open 2023: Nick Kyrgios can play at Rod Laver Arena despite winning a record at John Cain Arena

Ryan Sederquist

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