Tennis showman Nick Kyrgios has confirmed he will miss a second consecutive Australian Open through injury after failing to overcome a wrist issue.
The 2022 Wimbledon finalist wasn’t listed in the main draw entry list released on Thursday and had always appeared unlikely to compete in his home slam, saying last month the “stars needed to align” for him to feature.
Kyrgios, 28, officially confirmed his absence on Saturday, without putting a timeline on his return.
“Obviously had a really tough year with injury, had that knee surgery and came back a little bit too soon and set me back a little bit, then obviously had some wrist issues,” Kyrgios said on the subscription website OnlyFans.
“So this is a very disappointing time for me, but I won’t be able to compete at the 2024 Australian Open.
“Obviously heartbreaking. I’ve had so many amazing memories there and I just want to really get back to playing at the top of my game and doing it right and I need a little more time.
“I was so close to winning a grand slam – I want to make sure that my body is going to have the time it needs to come back, so please bear with me.”
The absence of former world No.13 Kyrgios is a hefty blow to AO organisers, given his popularity with fans and entertaining style of play.
It also scuppers any hopes of rekindling his doubles partnership with Thanasi Kokkinakis, which delivered the 2022 AO title.
Kyrgios withdrew from the 2023 Open on the eve of the tournament with a knee injury before undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee.
He didn’t return until mid-year but tore a ligament in his right wrist in June, prompting his withdrawal from Wimbledon, and hasn’t played since.
The timing of his injuries have been unfortunate after his brilliant 2022 where he also reached the quarter-finals of the US Open, along with his golden Wimbledon run.
When he does return, Kyrgios can use his protected ranking of 21 until March 2024, nine months after his one and only match in 2023, in Stuttgart in June.
He would also be a likely contender for wildcard berths at the majors.
Kyrgios indicated he would be involved in commentary at Melbourne Park while sidelined from playing.
World No.12 Alex de Minaur will lead the Australian men’s charge at Melbourne Park.
Alexei Popyrin, Max Purcell, Jordan Thompson, Aleksandar Vukic, Kokkinakis, Christoper O’Connell and Rinky Hijikata are also in the main draw entry list.