Nick Kyrgios has launched a stinging attack on ‘cringeworthy’ Novak Djokovic and says the Serb has a ‘sick obsession’ with wanting to be liked.
Australian star Kyrgios also claimed Djokovic would never surpass Roger Federer in terms of tennis greatness despite suggesting he would overtake Federer’s Grand Slam haul of 20.
Djokovic won his 15th major at this year’s Australian Open.
‘I just feel like he’s got a sick obsession with wanting to be liked,’ Kyrgios said of Djokovic on the No Challenges Remaining podcast.
‘He just wants to be Federer. I feel he wants to be liked so much that I just can’t stand him. This celebration thing is so cringeworthy.
‘He’s unbelievable, a champion of the sport, one of the greatest we will ever see. I think he will get the Grand Slam count and overtake Federer.
‘[But] we’re talking about a guy who pulled out of the Australian Open one year because it was too hot. No matter how many Grand Slams he wins, he will never be the greatest to me.
‘I’ve played him twice and I’m sorry but if you cannot beat me, you cannot be the greatest of all time. Look at how much I train and put in… it’s zero compared to him.
‘For me Federer will always be the greatest of all time. What Rafa has done has been pretty scary too.
‘But Novak just riles me the wrong way. He always says what he thinks he needs to say rather than his actual opinion.
‘The celebration just kills me. Every time it does… it kills me. If I play him and beat him again, I’m doing the celebration in front of him [laughing]… that would be hilarious!’
Kyrgios also claimed British legend Sir Andy Murray, a winner of three Grand Slam titles, was ‘so much better’ than Djokovic.
He added: ‘I’m sad [about Murray’s injury problems]. Genuinely sad. I think his record against Djokovic is embarrassing.
‘I feel he’s so much better than Novak, I’ve played them both. I think Andy returns better, his serve is better. He should have won so many more Grand Slams.
‘Against Murray you can’t slice, he knows that’s garbage. But I feel Djokovic doesn’t really know what to do [to that].
‘If I was Murray’s coach he would have won more Grand Slams for sure!’
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