Kokkinakis On Alcaraz: ‘His Energy Is Almost Contagious’ | ATP Tour | Tennis

Arguably essentially the most memorable match of the season got here within the second spherical of the Australian Open, the place after 5 hours and 45 minutes, Andy Murray rallied previous residence favorite Thanasi Kokkinakis. The gruelling five-set encounter drew to a detailed at 4:05 a.m. in Melbourne, two hours from dawn.

It would have been simple for Kokkinakis to fall right into a hunch after his defeat. The Australian let slip a number of leads towards the previous World No. 1 at his residence Grand Slam, the place he was pushing for an enormous run.

“Although it was a heartbreaking match to be honest and I had it in the bag a few times, as distraught as I was after the match, I actually really enjoyed it. I had a lot of fun out there,” Kokkinakis advised ATPTour.com. “One of the only times I can say after a big loss, especially one where I was on the front foot the whole time, that I enjoyed it. Tennis is so results based that if you don’t win you’re just pissed and obviously I was pissed off, but I can look back at the summer I had and the level of tennis when I was playing at my best and try to take the positives away from that.”

Kokkinakis admitted he didn’t need to see a tennis racquet for a bit. But after per week, he was able to put the Murray defeat behind him.

“I’ve gone through worse stuff than losing a tennis match from being in a winning position. In the scheme of things it hurts for a little bit, but I had a lot of good feedback, a lot of people came up to me,” Kokkinakis stated. “Some idiots came up to me saying, ‘What happened?’ Not what I really wanted to talk about after, but for the most time it was encouraging signs.”

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In the massive image, it has been begin to the season for Kokkinakis. The week he was defending 250 Pepperstone ATP Rankings factors at Adelaide-2, the Australian was down a break within the third set of his first-round match towards Alexei Popyrin. Kokkinakis received the match and reached the ultimate, recouping 150 of these factors and later lifting an ATP Challenger Tour title in Manama, Bahrain.

“So far this year it’s taken a bloody good player to beat me, so I like to think my tennis is at a good spot,” Kokkinakis stated. “I’ve just got to try and keep pushing. You’ve got to have short-term memory in tennis. There’s another chance every week almost, so you can’t dwell on things too much.”

Kokkinakis won’t should for his subsequent match on the BNP Paribas Open, the place he’ll face prime seed Carlos Alcaraz within the second spherical. The Australian gushed concerning the 19-year-old Spaniard.

“It’s not just that he’s got no weaknesses, but he just plays with great energy. He plays tennis the right way. He’s always up and about, he’s always smiling,” Kokkinakis stated. “I think the crowd loves watching him because his energy is almost contagious. He’s one of my favourite players to watch. Whenever he’s playing, I try to tune in if I’ve got time.”

The youngest World No. 1 in Pepperstone ATP Rankings historical past has loads of instruments Kokkinakis might want to take care of on court docket.

“I just like the way he plays. He’s got good firepower, he’s lightning quick, he’s got good hands,” Kokkinakis stated. “I saw it a few years ago just watching some highlights of him. It’s so hard to eclipse what those legends have done in our sports with how many Slams they’ve won, but he’s definitely capable and I think he’s got a shot if he stays healthy for sure.”

Fans who’ve adopted Kokkinakis’ highway via this BNP Paribas Open may need observed a mid-tournament change for the Australian. He bought a haircut. Actually, he bought two.

“I butchered it this time around. I don’t know. I asked a few people, I’m looking at reviews,” Kokkinakis stated. “The first place I went to had decent reviews, then I walked in there and I didn’t see anyone under around 65 years old. I thought it was too late to pull out so I just kind of copped it in the end.”

The product was not what the World No. 94 was searching for to restore what he stated seemed like a “tennis ball” head. One hour later, he discovered one other barber.

“I went to a guy who apparently had a court date later that day, so that filled me with a lot of confidence to be honest because I knew he had probably cut hair somewhere along the line,” Kokkinakis stated. “I didn’t judge and he did a good cut, so I’m happy with the result.”

Now Kokkinakis can absolutely concentrate on his subsequent opponent. Although he is filled with reward for Alcaraz, the Aussie’s sport packs a punch, too.

“I know my game, when it’s at my best, is capable of beating a lot of guys,” Kokkinakis stated. “But I also know that consistency is the thing I struggle with, so I’m hoping to match up with the best players this year and hopefully knock a few off and see how well I can do and push far this year.”

Source web site: www.atptour.com

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