Nick Kyrgios makes anxiety revelation about 2022 Wimbledon final vs Novak Djokovic

In 2022, Kyrgios met Djokovic in his first and lone Grand Slam final.

by Dzevad Mesic
Nick Kyrgios makes anxiety revelation about 2022 Wimbledon final vs Novak Djokovic
© Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

Nick Kyrgios reveals two days before the Wimbledon final he pretty much only got two hours of sleep as he was extremely anxious while trying to mentally prepare for meeting Novak Djokovic in the biggest match of his career. 

For years, Kyrgios was repeating that he believed that Wimbledon was his best chance at making a really deep Grand Slam run. Nearly two years ago, exactly that happened as the Australian tennis star made his big Slam breakthrough at The All England Club. 

After winning his opening five matches and then progressing into the Wimbledon final via a Rafael Nadal semifinal walkover, Kyrgios' next challenge was Djokovic, who had six Wimbledon titles at the time and hadn't lost a match at The Championships since 2018. 

Djokovic entered the Wimbledon final as the favorite due to his Slam resume and the experience was also heavily on his, but Kyrgios came up playing courageous and at a very high level, which resulted in the Australian winning the first set. While Kyrgios kept playing at high level for the remainder of the match, Djokovic still found a way to be an inch better and overcome the Australian 4-6 6-3 6-4 7-6 (3) for his seventh Wimbledon title.

Nearly two years later, Kyrgios admits that match and loss have been heavy on his mind over the last two years. 

Before losing to Djokovic in the 2022 final at The Championships, Kyrgios claimed straight-set wins over the Serb at the 2017 Indian Wells Masters and Acapulco.

"I won the first set and I'm two sets away..." Kyrgios started on the Good Trouble with Nick Kyrgios podcast.

"I feel like I still think about that match every day like what if I had played those two sets better like I won five sets in a row against Novak. I beat him twice before that, didn't drop a set, won the first which means five sets in a row and then I lose three straight.

"I didn't sleep for two nights leading up to that match. I literally got like two hours of sleep, I was so anxious, like every little thing that I did in my career led up to that one match, every gym session, every rehab session, every ice bath, every cold shower, led up to that one moment and it was just crazy that I was that close."

Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic
Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic © Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

Kyrgios: I played in the toughest possible era

Kyrgios, who will be celebrating his 29th birthday on 27th April, made his first Grand Slam quarterfinal at 2014 Wimbledon and that's when he got tipped for a very bright Slam future. But then, it took Kyrgios eight years to return to a Grand Slam quarterfinal at 2022 Wimbledon. 

After upsetting Rafael Nadal at 2014 Wimbledon, Kyrgios would often stumble upon the Spaniard, Roger Federer and Andy Murray at the Grand Slam level in the next couple of years. Unfortunately for Kyrgios, meeting those players would also always mean an end to his Grand Slam run. 

Against Djokovic, the 28-year-old Australian didn't have a Grand Slam match until 2022 Wimbledon.

"My era was so tough like, when I was 21-22, playing prime Novak, Nadal, Federer, and Murray, every fourth round, if you think about it, they were unbeatable," Kyrgios said.

"I make it to the fourth round… It was like everything, then I was left in the draw with these guys, I needed to be born five years later."

Nick Kyrgios
Nick Kyrgios © Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

What was Djokovic's message to Kyrgios after their Wimbledon final?

Despite the loss, there wasn't anything negative that could have been said about Kyrgios' performance as it was just Djokovic being slightly better that day. 

Djokovic himself acknowledged Kyrgios' great run and performance as he told the Australian that he had no doubt in his mind that he would have more similar Slam runs. 

“Nick, you’ll be back. Not just at Wimbledon, but in finals,” Djokovic told Kyrgios during on-court trophy presentation after the 2022 Wimbledon final.

“It’s tough to find consolation words after a tough loss like this but you showed why you deserve to be one of the best players in the world, particularly on this surface. Congrats to you and your team for an amazing tournament. 

“I wish you all the best. I really respect you a lot. I think you’re a phenomenal tennis player and athlete and an amazing talent."

Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic
Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic © Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

Two months after 2022 Wimbledon, Kyrgios also made his first US Open quarterfinal before losing to Karen Khachanov. Since then, Kyrgios hasn't appeared in Grand Slam tournaments due to knee and wrist injuries. 

Last week, Kyrgios started practicing again and his Grand Slam comeback could potentially come at either the French Open or Wimbledon.

Nick Kyrgios Wimbledon Novak Djokovic