Philippoussis ready to mentor Kyrgios if asked

| Updated: Dec 06, 2016 16:34 IST

Johannesburg [South Africa], Dec. 6 (ANI): Former Australian tennis player Mark Philippoussis has asserted that he is ready to mentor troubled Nick Kyrgios if the latter asks him. Kyrgios and Philippoussis, both having similar styles of play and temperament, will be playing together at next month's World Tennis Challenge exhibition event in Adelaide. "He's someone that's very intriguing to think about coaching, of course," Sport24 quoted Philippoussis as saying in an interview. "But you've got to know what's involved and be sure that you're ready for that." "For me to be away from my family, it's got to be for good reason. I would like the person to listen to me. So we'll see," he added. The 40-year-old Australian said he knows Kyrgios and according to him, it is important for the latter to pick the coach and for him to say he's ready to have a coach. "It's not going to work if his agent or his manager picks a coach for him. It (coaching him) is a very interesting thought because I know what he's capable of and, to be quite honest, I know what he's going through at stages because I've gone through the same thing," he said. "If anyone can understand what he's coming from on a personal level, and what he's going through, I believe it's me because I guarantee I've been there. I believe that I could definitely help him but also his game, because as good as he is and as talented as he is, there's still room for improvement," he added. The current World No.13 has been without a coach the eve of Wimbledon 2015 when he stopped working with Todd Larkham. Since then he has often been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. After failing to return numerous serves at the 2015 Wimbledon Championships, he was accused of "tanking" - deliberately not playing up to his abilities - during his fourth round loss to Richard Gasquet. Later on, during a match at the 2015 Rogers Cup, he created a controversy for insults directed at his opponent Stan Wawrinka. The 21-year-old was, then in October this year, handed over a two-month suspension by the ATP after a bizarre straight-sets loss at the Shanghai Masters. The ban announcement comes after a probe into Kyrgios' performance against German Mischa Zverev in a second-round match at the Shanghai Masters in which he fell 6-3, 6-1 in 48 minutes and appeared to give up on a number of occasions. During the match, Kyrgios lobbed a serve over the net and walked off the court before Zverev fired a winner. Later on, after the crowd began booing him, he engaged with them and told his fans if they knew what they were talking about. (ANI)
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