Toni Nadal has taken an extraordinary swipe at Nick Kyrgios, following on from his nephew’s criticism last week.
Rafael Nadal claimed Kyrgios ‘lacks respect for the public, himself and his opponent’, after the Aussie’s shock win over the World No.2 in Mexico.
And uncle Toni has now piled on.
“Rafa is totally right,” Toni was quoted by Tennis World.
“He lacks education and smartness.
“He should be fighting for the top-rankings and instead, he is no. 40.
“He does not look like a bad guy but he has been disrespectful too many times to get back on track.”
Toni coached his nephew up until the start of last year, when he stepped away from the role.
The real reason for Nadal’s comments
On Thursday, Rafa said he took aim at Kyrgios because he doesn’t think he’s setting a good example for younger players.
Nadal insisted on Wednesday that he has immense respect for Kyrgios’s talent, and his public scolding of the mercurial Aussie after their stormy Acapulco clash doesn’t change that.
Nadal told reporters at the Indian Wells Masters that he thought his comments may have suffered in translation, but his assessment of Kyrgios hadn’t really changed.
“I never said nothing too negative about Nick, even if he took it more personally,” Nadal said, adding that his comments had nothing to do with the underarm serve, which didn’t make him feel disrespected at all.
“I understand this part of the game and I think it’s a good show for the game, but there’s other stuff in my opinion he can do better,” Nadal said, adding that he feared Kyrgios’s attitude sets a bad example for younger players.
“Everybody is free to do whatever they want, but at end of the day, in my opinion, he has an impact on the new generations,” Nadal said.
“He’s young, he’s a famous player and in my opinion we need to show good values for the kids.”
Kyrgios, who jumped 39 places in the rankings to 33 in the world, said last week he wasn’t interested in Nadal’s opinion.
“I heard that he took it very personally. I really didn’t see it but somebody told me he put some stuff on his social networks,” said Nadal, the second seed in an Indian Wells field headed by world number one Novak Djokovic.