Wimbledon: 'I thought my ship had sailed' – Kyrgios in disbelief after making first major semi-final

By Sports Desk July 06, 2022

Nick Kyrgios was in disbelief after reaching his first grand slam semi-final with a Wimbledon victory over Cristian Garin, suggesting his best chances of major success had been wasted.

Kyrgios produced an impressive display on No. 1 Court to down his Chilean opponent 6-4 6-3 7-6 (7-5), becoming the first unseeded Wimbledon semi-finalist since Rainer Schuttler and Marat Safin in 2008.

The Australian, who had lost two previous grand slam quarter-finals (at Wimbledon in 2014 and the Australian Open the following year) has courted controversy during a box-office run at SW19, spitting in the direction of a spectator during his opener last week before labelling Stefanos Tsitsipas "soft" after an ill-tempered third-round match.

And the 27-year-old, who took a moment to sit and savour his win before conducting his court-side interview, thought he had squandered any chance of grand slam success earlier in his career.

"Amazing atmosphere out here again, I just never thought I'd be at a semi-final of a grand slam, honestly, I thought my ship had sailed," he said.

"You know, I didn't go about things great earlier in my career, and may have wasted that little window.

"But I'm just really proud of the way I've come back out here, and of my team."

Kyrgios put the rows and trick-shots to one side during a professional performance, serving 17 aces and saving eight of the nine break points conjured by Garin.

Asked how he had found consistency without working with a full-time coach, Kyrgios said: "I don't have a coach, I would never put that burden on someone!

"Each and every one of my team plays a very important role, [but] I feel like no-one knows my tennis like I do. 

"I've been playing this sport since I was seven, and to reach a semi-final of a grand slam… I'm pretty happy."

Kyrgios' clash with Garin represented Wimbledon's first quarter-final between two unseeded players since 2008 (Arnaud Clement v Schuttler), and the Australian said he never felt in control against a tough opponent despite posting a straight-sets win.

"Honestly, I felt I was playing on the back foot a lot, he's a hell of a player, he's obviously feeling very confident, it's been a hell of a tournament from him to make the quarter-finals," he continued.

"I felt I got a bit lucky on a couple of break points here and there, it could easily have been him standing here.

"I'll just take that and prepare for my next match.

"I don't want to think about the semi-final just yet, there's a lot to be done from now until then. We'll go back, my dad will cook dinner as always, we'll watch a movie and just chill out. That's it."

Related items

  • Klopp confident the goals will come for Reds winger Diaz Klopp confident the goals will come for Reds winger Diaz

    Jurgen Klopp is confident the goals will come for Luis Diaz after the winger was wasteful in the 2-2 draw at Fulham last weekend.

    Diaz missed two Opta-defined 'big chances' in the Reds' opening match of the Premier League season at Craven Cottage, rattling the post in the first half.

    The Colombia international took no time to settle at Anfield following his big-money move from Porto in January, scoring six goals and providing five assists in 26 appearances last season.

    Liverpool lost Sadio Mane to Bayern Munich in June, but Klopp is backing Diaz to help fill the void left by the Senegal forward.

    Asked if Diaz can score 10-15 goals this season, the Reds manager said: "Oh definitely, that is his quality. We need to see but of course that is his potential.

    "We work on it but not with Luis specifically. We don't take him out because the other two scored and he didn't, so we show him how. That's not necessary. It's not a problem. You can't force it

    "Last week people were asking ‘How can you play without Sadio?' but in November/December everybody was thinking about when he would score the next goal, and Mo [Salah] was on fire. You just let it go.

    "You see the situations Luis had, big chances, and he was just unlucky. He started on the first day with us and took part in all the sessions and that is the most important thing.

    "All the rest will come. In the long term it is of course not a problem. It is about being prepared and fighting through moments like this."

    Klopp called for patience with Diaz ahead of Liverpool's first home game of the season against Crystal Palace on Monday.

    He added: "When Sadio played against us, he scored three times for Southampton but it was not that he scored every week. He didn't even start the game when he played against us.

    "So the consistency came with the confidence and with the team-mates, the structure of our game. So that is what we're working on that doesn't change. The way we play should help strikers. It is the way we play. It's the way we bring the boys in the situation.

    "Of course it is about whether it is in you or not, but it's the way we play, how we position the players, how we protect the players, where we win the balls back.

    "And it is how the boys can use their speed in these moments. They will be in a lot of goalscoring situations and that then makes you the player we remember."

  • Premier League turns 30: Key records, facts and figures as the best league in the world reaches landmark Premier League turns 30: Key records, facts and figures as the best league in the world reaches landmark

    The Premier League is officially 30 years old.

    On Saturday, August 15, 1992, the Premier League's inaugural season began with a packed schedule of 15:00 kick-offs.

    Its foundation came as a result of clubs in the old First Division breaking away from the Football League in order to maximise their earning potential, with much of that initially focused around the possibility of lucrative TV rights deals.

    As the Football Association (FA) had a strained relationship with the Football League at the time, the FA backed plans for the formation of the breakaway league, and in July 1991 the Founder Members Agreement was signed by the top-flight clubs.

    While the Premier League fell under the auspices of the FA, the league was given economic independence from the governing body and the Football League, and that has been a major contributing factor in it becoming the behemoth we know in 2022.

    Thirty years on, many believe it to be the best league in world football, and on this day it only seems right to take a trip down memory lane with a look at key records, stats and figures from the competition's three decades...

    Managing expectations

    This is classic 'pub quiz' territory: which manager has presided over the most Premier League games?

    You know it's either Alex Ferguson or Arsene Wenger, don't you? You probably end up going for the Manchester United icon because of his sheer longevity.

    Alas, you'd be wrong.

    Wenger took charge of 18 more Premier League games (828) than 'Fergie' before he brought his long Arsenal career to a close.

    Nevertheless, Ferguson's 13 titles look unlikely to ever be matched. His closest rival in that respect is Pep Guardiola (four), with Wenger joined on three by Jose Mourinho.

    Play on, player

    Over the first 30 seasons of the Premier League, 4,488 players appeared in the competition at an average of 149.6 debutants per campaign.

    If we ignore the inaugural and ongoing seasons for obvious reasons, the campaign with the most debutants was 2015-16 when 162 players made their Premier League bows.

    Of the nearly 4,500 individuals to feature in the competition up to the start of the 2022-23 season, Gareth Barry sits clear with the most appearances (653), the last of which came during the 2017-18 season with West Brom.

    It's a record that will take some beating, but if anyone's got a chance of toppling him, it's his former Manchester City team-mate James Milner.

    The 36-year-old, now of Liverpool, is fourth on the all-time list with 589 outings.

    Forever young

    Everyone loves a 'wonderkid'. The Premier League has seen more than its fair share over the years, and some got started very, very young.

    Mark Platts was the first 16-year-old to ever play in the Premier League when he made his Sheffield Wednesday debut in February 1996.

    When Matthew Briggs came along 11 years later and featured for Fulham at 16 years and 68 days old, you'd have been forgiven for thinking his record would stand the test of time.

    It lasted 12 years until another Fulham player shaved 38 days off Briggs' record – that player was Harvey Elliott. Now at Liverpool, the young midfielder looks set for a glittering career.

    The name of the game

    Alan Shearer, Thierry Henry, Cristiano Ronaldo, Mohamed Salah, Wayne Rooney – when you think of Premier League goalscorers, these are probably the names that immediately spring to mind.

    Well, you're wrong. You should be thinking about Andrew Johnson, Glen Johnson, Tommy Johnson, Bradley Johnson, Roger Johnson et al.

    Why? Because there are more players with the surname Johnson to have scored in the Premier League than any other surname.

    There have been 21 of them to be exact, two more than the Williams clan.

    Synonymous.

    Get to the points

    It's been a frustrating few (nine?) years for Man United fans, and this season has started in horrific fashion. But don't worry, folks, if you just look at the big (massive) picture, it'll definitely all feel much better.

    United still sit top of the overall Premier League table with 2,366 points, giving them a healthy 219-point cushion over second-placed Arsenal.

    Manchester City may have won four of the past five league titles, a feat only United had achieved before them in the Premier League, but the real story is that they're way back on 1,635 Premier League points.

    Yo-yo with the flow

    To be fair, almost every single one of you knows what's coming here.

    You guessed it, Norwich City's relegation from the last season makes them the yo-yoingest (yes, we've just made that up) club in Premier League history.

    That was their sixth relegation to go with their five promotions to the top flight since 1992, taking them one clear of West Brom, who have the same number of ascensions but only five demotions to their name.

    I love goals, goals, goals, goals

    Of course, Shearer remains the Premier's League all-time leading scorer with 260, 52 more than Wayne Rooney in second.

    But Harry Kane looks to be in with a chance of usurping both England greats – in fact, another solid season could take him beyond 200 as his header against Chelsea on Sunday took him to 184.

    Kane also appears among the very best goalscoring combinations in the competition's history as he and Son Heung-min have linked up for 41 goals – that's five more than Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard as the next-best.

    As for high-scoring matches, there have been three Premier League games that have finished with a nine-goal margin – two were achieved by Man Utd (9-0 v Southampton in February 2021, and v Ipswich Town in March 1995) and Leicester City managed it in October 2019, also crushing Saints 9-0.

    Do call it a comeback

    Your team's trailing 2-0, you're despondent and bereft of hope. But then, out of nowhere, you've got a goal back. Then the equaliser. And then, just when you'd convinced yourself "this draw feels like a win", a third goes in, and it's pandemonium.

    There are few more satisfying situations in football than when you team produces such a turnaround – the despair you were feeling earlier only makes your full-time jubilation that bit more intense.

    The biggest such turnarounds that led to wins all involved teams coming back from three goals down. Leeds United, Wimbledon and Wolves have all managed it in 4-3 victories, while Man United beat Spurs 5-3 from 3-0 down.

    No team have done so since Wolves in October 2003, although Newcastle United certainly deserve a special mention – they are the only team to find themselves 4-0 down and avoid defeat. Their 4-4 draw with Arsenal in February 2011 remains a Premier League classic.

    Stop the clock!

    Here's another for the pub quiz enthusiasts: who scored the quickest goal in Premier League history?

    Netting just 7.69 seconds into an April 2019 game between Southampton and Watford, Shane Long opened the scoring to break a 19-year record that had been set by Spurs defender Ledley King.

    To put that into context, it'd take you longer to read that sentence. It was also quicker than Usain Bolt's world-record time in the 100 metres (9.58 seconds).

    The latest goal ever is maybe a less notable record, but it nonetheless belongs to Bruno Fernandes, who in September 2020 scored a penalty after 99 minutes and 45 seconds to seal United a dramatic 3-2 win over Brighton and Hove Albion – yes, that's the game when the Seagulls hit the woodwork a record five times.

    As for the quickest hat-trick, that was scored by Sadio Mane for Southampton against Aston Villa in May 2015, with his first and third goals separated by just two minutes and 56 seconds.

  • Carreno-Busta mounts comeback to stun Hurkacz in Canadian Open final Carreno-Busta mounts comeback to stun Hurkacz in Canadian Open final

    Pablo Carreno-Busta came back from a set down to mount a superb comeback against Hubert Hurkacz and win the first ATP 1000 event of his career on Sunday.

    The Spaniard became the first unseeded player to win the tournament since Guilhermo Canas in 2002 after weathering an early storm to shock the eighth seed 3-6 6-3 6-3 in Montreal.

    Having come through a gruelling semi-final encounter with Dan Evans to reach his first ATP 1000 final in singles, the Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist struggled to deal with his opponent's impressive slew of aces in the first set, and saw his serve broken in the sixth game.

    But a ruthless start to the second set saw Carreno-Busta break early, racing out to a 3-0 lead and holding his nerve to keep the gap to his Polish opponent, who was chasing a second ATP 1000 crown.

    World number 10 Hurkacz attempted to rally with a fine start to the third set, but another loss of serve effectively stalled his momentum and Carreno-Busta was able to take the victory.

    The result marks a much-needed boost for Carreno-Busta, who suffered first-round exits at the French Open and Wimbledon after making the last-16 in Australia, with the U.S. Open set to start later this month.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.