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Aussie • ATP • Tennis Star Nick Krygios Beats Fabio Fognini 6-3, 6-3 in Miami

Nick Kyrgios of Australia in action against Dusan Lajovic of Serbia during their second round match at the Miami Open tennis tournament on Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA, 24 March 2018 EPA-EFE/RHONA WISE

 

 

By Craig Cignarelli

 

Kyrgios-Fognini is like 8:45 P.M. on July 4th in America – as darkness descends, the fireworks are inevitable. I caught the second set of this match. The Aussie won the first 6-3, as Fabio played one poor game and then, as he is prone to do, went away mentally.

 

Fognini held to start the second with big serving, but you could see Kyrgios working hard on this game. Top players know that putting the hammer down when an opponent’s head may not be right can pay quick dividends. Fognini is a veteran though and came up with big serves when he needed them. 1-0 the Italian.

 

Nick holds with more big serving to go 1-1 With these two, neither player looks like he is trying. They both carry that hang-dog look that can suck the energy out of an opponent and a crowd.

 

Fabio Fognini of Italy in action against Nick Kyrgios of Australia during a third round match at the Miami Open tennis tournament on Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA, 26 March 2018. EPA-EFE/ERIK S. LESSER

Fognini changing directions a lot this set, moving Nick. Fabio sprays a forehand at 15-15 and sends a shoutout to his box. For Kyrgios, recognizing another mental lapse is an imperative against the talented Italian. He takes immediate advantage, pulling the trigger on a backhand to gain double break point, and then converts on another Fognini miss. At this level, that is all one needs to secure victory.

 

Kyrgios is a strong frontrunner and the break allows him to get even more aggressive on his return games. He did this well to secure a 6-3, 6-3 victory and moved into the next round.

 

Mental lapses will happen but the great ones breathe their way through it before starting the next point. At this level, every point is too important.

 

Note: During Wimbledon, each point is worth about four grand, so if you can’t get motivated for that, your last name is probably Buffet or Gulbis. ( wealthy ) Breathe, focus on your tactics for the next point, know where you are going to serve or return and why, and know how to get to your winning position. Anything else in your head at this moment is likely a distraction.

 

Lesson: Before you try controlling your racket head, get your own head right.

 

This is the first of a series of upcoming tennis lessons from professional matches.

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