Sports, Tennis

Tomic challenges Kyrgios to million-dollar grudge match


By AFP
Published : 27 May 2022 08:11 PM

Bernard Tomic has challenged Nick Kyrgios to stump up a million dollars for a winner-takes-all grudge match, but his fellow Australian said Friday he "had bigger fish to fry".

The feuding tennis players used to be friends but have been taking potshots at each other over recent years.

Their bickering reignited this week with Kyrgios calling Tomic "the most hated athlete in Australia" after his former Davis Cup teammate claimed he had a better playing record.

Tomic, who reached a career-high 17 but is now playing the lower-level Challenger circuit and is ranked 418th in the world after his game collapsed, challenged Kyrgios to put his money where his mouth was.

"I'll put up a million and you put up a million, let's see who is the better player," the 29-year-old Tomic told the Gold Coast Bulletin, his local newspaper.

"Let the public see who is better for once and for all. I've beaten you easy before and I'll do it again. Plus we'll play on grass so you don't make any excuses. Anywhere, anytime."

Amazingly, the pair have never met on the ATP Tour. Tomic won their one and only clash, 6-3, 6-4, at the 2019 Kooyong Classic in Melbourne, an exhibition.

The controversial Kyrgios, ranked 76, said he was happy to play Tomic, but only on the ATP Tour.

"I'm still playing on the tour, my brother, I've got bigger fish to fry," the 27-year-old said on Instagram.

"I understand you're at the future and challenger level right now, but if you want to play me and set this straight, just get back to the top of the sport.

"I'm right here, I'm not going anywhere. I'll be waiting for you ... and if you're capable of playing a decent level of tennis you'll show that there's no need to go to the media, use my name to try and get relevant again."

Neither player is at the French Open in Paris but both are looking to contest next month's Wimbledon.