World No. 14 Nick Kyrgios has been banned for a period of eight weeks and fined $25,000 by the ATP for his deplorable behaviour at last week's Shanghai Masters. However, it appears the Australian's sentence may be reduced to three weeks after he apologized and agreed to see a psychologist.
Nick Kyrgios has developed a reputation for his tantrums on the tennis court. However, the youngster exceeded his own low standards at last week's Shanghai Open. Right after winning the Japan Open, Kyrgios came to Shanghai, and in the second round encounter, he threw the match against Mischa Zverev. He repeatedly walked off before Zverev had returned his serves and kept sending soft serves. At one point, he was reprimanded by the umpire which had only a transient effect on him. He also shut down a member of the audience who rebuked him retorting, "You wanna come here and play? Sit down, shut up and watch".
After the event, Kyrgios received some mentoring from World No.2 Andy Murray who hoped he controlled himself better on and off the court but said that he was "not convinced" a fine was the best solution.
On Wednesday, Kyrgios was fined a lesser amount by the ATP without any hint of a suspension.
"After completion of the on-site investigation, Kyrgios received the on-site maximum fine of $US10,000 for lack of best efforts, as well as a $US5,000 fine for verbal abuse of a spectator, and a $US1,500 fine for unsportsmanlike conduct,” a statement from tennis governing body ATP said.
However, he has now been served an eight-week suspension and a bigger fine. Kyrgios' suspension is set to end on Sunday, 15 January 2017. But the ATP has said his ban would be shortened to three weeks if Kyrgios accepts "a plan of care under the direction of a sports psychologist".
The suspension is Kyrgios' second following his 2015 ban for 28 days for his obscene remarks about Stan Wawrinka's girlfriend during a Rogers Cup match.
Post the eight-week sentence, the Aussie has said he was "truly sorry" and would "use this time off to improve on and off the court".
"I regret that my year is ending this way. I do understand and respect the decision by the ATP.
"The season has been a long one as I battled several injuries and other challenges towards the end of the summer.
"My body finally just gave out in Shanghai both physically and mentally.
"This is no excuse, and I know very well that I need to
Later developments indicate that Kyrgios has agreed to take help as prescribed by the ATP and could have his sentence reduced.
"Nick understands the gravity of his actions, has shown remorse and expressed a willingness to improve.
"We have spoken to his management and Nick has agreed to seek the help of a sports psychologist and will now be available to play in the Hopman Cup in early January," a Tennis Australia spokesperson said, reported AFP.