How Kyrgios is keeping it low-key in NYC
HIS eyes on the prize, Nick Kyrgios is shunning New York's bright lights in the hope of turning the grand slam corner with a low-key approach to his latest US Open title quest.
Tennis's one-time wild child made the surprise confession ahead of his first- round clash with Radu Albot on Tuesday that the Manhattan major was his least comfortable of the season's four slams and that escaping the hustle and bustle was key to a deep run.
"Honestly, I prefer the quieter it is, the better it is. I get a bit anxious with all the stuff going on around here," Kyrgios said.
"It's an exciting event. When I was bit younger, I really liked it. I loved getting to the courts, I loved sort of hanging around and now I just want to get out of here as soon as possible.
"My favourite grand slam's Australia obviously, but I like Wimbledon. I like the set-up there. It's quiet in the houses and stuff.
"But here, it's just so full on and I think to have success here you've got to do the right things and get in and out and look after yourself.
"Just go back to the hotel and just hang out, keep it low key."
Kyrgios's older and wiser approach can't stop the 23-year-old from letting his mind wander to a projected Saturday night third-round showstopper with Roger Federer.
"As a seed and someone who, realistically, is supposed to move forward in the draw, you kind of look forward. It's hard not to with social media these days," Kyrgios said.
"I get excited to think about it, but just to be able to play another grand slam is a blessing in itself.
"There was a period in my tennis career where I felt just playing one grand slam, my first Aussie Open, was amazing and now I've almost hit the 20-mark and just to play another grand slam, you can't take it for granted. "Yeah, the (potential) Roger match is unbelievable but just to be out here again with all the top players and being a part of it is pretty fun."
It may be fun but Kyrgios is in New York for business, not pleasure, and believes he can contend.
Twice a grand slam quarter-finalist as a teenager, the Canberran hasn't reached the last eight of a major since the 2015 Australian Open with hip, elbow and shoulder injuries holding the prodigious talent back.
But he believes a breakthrough is around the corner.
"The Aussie Open this year I played really well. I played Dimitrov fourth round, I had more than enough chances to win," said Kyrgios, seeded 30th.
"It's more just about winning those matches. I put myself into a position more times than not in a grand slam - third, fourth round, quarter-finals - and at the end of the day I've just got to raise my level and push and win those matches.
"It's just as simple as that really."