Nick Kyrgios has offered a heartbreaking insight into his devastation after losing in the quarter-finals at the US Open in a five-set thriller on Tuesday.
The Aussie star was absolutely shattered as he fronted up to reporters in his post-match press conference after letting a huge opportunity slip through his fingers against Karen Khachanov.
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Kyrgios came into the match having won 20 of his last 23 singles matches, including a run to the final at Wimbledon in July and a stunning win over World No.1 Daniil Medvedev in New York.
With Rafa Nadal crashing out at the hands of Frances Tiafoe in the fourth round, many were tipping Kyrgios to go one step further than he did at Wimbledon and win his maiden grand slam title.
However the Aussie star fell agonisingly short against Khachanov, battling through a knee complaint early in the match to eventually lose in five sets.
“I honestly feel like shit. I feel like I’ve let so many people down," he said in his press conference.
“Just came out flat, physically didn’t feeling great. Then I ended up feeling great towards the end of the match.
"I'm obviously devastated. But all credit to Karen. He's a fighter. He's a warrior. I thought he served really good today. Honestly probably the best server I played this tournament, to be honest, the way he was hitting his spots under pressure.
"He just played the big points well. Really wasn't anything in it. I'm just devastated obviously. Just feel like it was either winning it all or nothing at all, to be honest.
"I feel like I've just failed at this event right now. That's what it feels like."
Kyrgios has expressed his desire to return home and see his family a number of times throughout the North American hard-court swing.
When asked if he would play again this year he said: “Honestly I don't even really care about any other tournament. Like, I feel like at the grand slams, now having success at a grand slam, it’s just like no other tournament really matters.
"It’s like you get better, you get worse, and at a grand slam none of it matters. You either win or lose.
“People don’t care if you got better on the day, or you lost (in) four (or) in the fifth, or you played one of the best matches of the tournament – you lost.
“That’s all people remember at a grand slam, whether you win or you lose.
“I think pretty much every other tournament during the year is a waste of time. You just front up, show up at a grand slam. It’s what you’re remembered by.
"These four tournaments are the only ones that are ever going to matter. And it’s just like you’ve got to start it all again, and I have to wait to the Australian Open.
“It’s just devastating. It’s heartbreaking. Not just for me but for everyone I know who wants me to win.”
Nick Kyrgios shattered after loss at US Open
Kyrgios complained to his box about his knee during the first set and took a medical timeout soon after.
The World No.25 said it started to feel better as the match went on and wasn't the reason he lost.
“Just (the) knee is sore,” he said. “Obviously I’ve been playing a lot of tennis the last couple of months.
“Just came out, the core was a little bit – I just split-stepped and just tweaked it a little bit.
“It ended up feeling fine, got some deep heat on it. Everyone is probably carrying a bit of a niggle right now. Nothing major.
"I didn’t end up feeling it towards the third, fourth, and fifth (sets). I felt great physically. At the end of the match I honestly felt fine. Just mentally distraught.”