Wimbledon: Elena Rybakina speaks after winning Women's final
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Novak Djokovic has offered Nick Kyrgios a playful bet on the outcome of Sunday’s all-important Wimbledon final between the two players. The Serb defeated Cameron Norrie in Friday’s semi-final to book a high-profile meeting with Kyrgios on Centre Court, while the Australian hopeful was handed a bye following Rafael Nadal’s withdrawal from the tournament with an abdominal injury.
It remains to be seen which player will come out on top with the stakes at their highest on Sunday, although Djokovic appears to be the overwhelming favourite to beat Kyrgios to the most prestigious Grand Slam trophy of them all. He exchanged words with his rival on the practice courts on Saturday, thanking Kyrgios for his backing over the Australian Open saga back in January.
Kyrgios took to Instagram to send a cheeky message to Djokovic later on Saturday, asking his upcoming opponent whether or not they can be classed as friends after their warm exchange. Djokovic went on to respond by offering Kyrgios an informal bet that could spice up their Wimbledon final, which will mark only the third professional meeting between the two players.
“If you are inviting me to a drink or dinner, I accept,” replied Djokovic on his Instagram story, followed by a laughing emoji, before adding: “P.S. Winner of tomorrow pays.”
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Kyrgios appeared to be up for the challenge, with the 27-year-old wasting no time in accepting Djokovic’s offer by posting: “Deal, let’s go to a nightclub and go nuts.”
This year’s Wimbledon finalists previously shared a rocky relationship on court, with both players having taken shots at each other in the media over the last few years. They appear to have struck up a bond since Kyrgios publicly supported Djokovic over his Australian Open fiasco, although the latter recently played down talk of a friendship blossoming out of the situation.
“I don’t know if I can call it a bromance yet, but we definitely have a better relationship than what it was probably prior to January this year,” said Djokovic.
“But when it was really tough for me in Australia, he was one of the very few players that came out publicly and supported me and stood by me. That’s something I truly appreciate, so I respect him for that a lot.”
Kyrgios boasts a remarkable 100 per cent win record over Djokovic, with the former having won both of their previous meetings on the ATP Tour. The pair have not played each other since 2017, though, when Kyrgios beat his Serbian rival in straight sets at that year’s Indian Wells.
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