Nick Kyrgios continues to shine in both singles and doubles, producing an extraordinary round-the-net winner at the Japan Open on Wednesday.
Kyrgios moved into the quarter-finals of the doubles event in Tokyo after he and Thanasi Kokkinakis proved too good for Japanese wildcards Yoshihito Nishioka and Kaichi Uchida.
The Aussie duo prevailed 6-1 6-2 in the first-round encounter, highlighted by a stunning winner from Kyrgios early in the second set.
After Nishioka hit a backhand smash at the net that he left a little short, Kyrgios was forced to sprint way off court to retrieve the ball.
Facing an impossible angle to get the ball back over the net, the Aussie star instead decided to go around it.
Kyrgios blasted a brilliant forehand winner down the line that actually went around the net post, leaving fans and commentators in awe.
“He enjoyed that one and so he should,” one TV commentator said.
“That was a Kyrgios special in Tokyo…What a shot.”
Kyrgios reposted a clip of the winner from Tennis TV on Twitter, writing “I’m good”.
Nick Kyrgios endures breathing problems in singles victory
Kyrgios had earlier revealed how he had to overcome breathing problems before breezing into the second round of the singles event.
The Wimbledon finalist saved a break point in his opening game before going on to an emphatic 6-3 6-1 victory against Taiwan’s Chun-Hsin Tseng in the Ariake Colosseum.
But Australia’s No.1 admitted afterwards that his early struggle in the 66-minute rout had been down to a touch of breathlessness as well as ring rust in his first tournament since his quarter-final loss at the US Open.
Telling reporters how he’d found it difficult to breathe because of the high humidity and different air conditions compared to back home, Kyrgios also noted how the courts were speeding up – something he feels will work to his advantage as he seeks his second title of the year.
Kyrgios also struggled with asthma at the start of the season, with the condition forcing him to pull out of a warm-up match before the Australian Open.
In Tokyo he dropped just four more points on his own serve after his first-game struggles, winning 25 of 29 points on first serve overall.
“I played really solid,” said the No.5 seed.
“I came out a bit slow, but I don’t play many matches so it’s hard to just get straight back into that competitive flow.
“But as soon as I held the first game I kind of found my form again and played really well.”
“The court is obviously playing faster compared to normal hard court events. I’m not complaining about that – I think big servers and guys who like to take the ball early and have flat backhands, it suits our game style.
“It’s fun tennis to watch, people playing aggressive and coming to the net and serving big. I think that’s the type of tennis that fans like to see sometimes. The court’s probably faster than average, but I like it.”
It was Kyrgios’ 36th win of a breakthrough season and set him up to maintain his spot in the world top 20.