Kyrgios once again lost his head at an umpire’s call in the final of the China Open.
The brain snap opened the door for Rafael Nadal to romp home to victory 6-2 6-1 in Beijing.
However, Hewitt says Kyrgios deserves credit for significantly improving his behaviour in recent months and blamed the explosive outburst at the umpire as an understandable cost of the expectations that come with meeting Nadal in a big final.
Nick Kyrgios’ emotions again got the better of him against Rafael Nadal. Picture: AFPSource:AFP
Hewitt, who has recently tried to turn fortunes around for troubled Australian stablemate Bernard Tomic with a series of heart-to-heart chats, praised Kyrgios as the new benchmark for the Davis Cup team.
“It’s still a work in progress for him and dealing with different situations that happen on the tour,” Hewitt said yesterday.
“I think he’s been a lot better in that (behaviour) though, especially in the last year or so. He’s made big strides.
“The pressure and expectation of playing Rafa in a final as well is not easy.
“He was up for it at the start of the match … and wasn’t able to get that early break.
“Once you give Rafa that opportunity, it’s hard to chase him down.”