Sydney, July 9 (IANS) Australian tennis player Nick Kyrgios has pulled out of the Tokyo Olympic Games, citing abdominal injury and absence of fans at venues. “It’s a decision I didn’t take lightly,” he tweeted.
Kyrgios says that it was always a dream to play in the Olympics. “It’s been my dream to represent Australia at the Olympics and I know I may never get that opportunity again. But I also know myself. The thought of playing in front of empty stadiums just doesn’t sit right with me. It never has,” he said.
Kyrgios confirmed that apart from absence of spectators, the abdominal injury that forced him to retire mid-way in his third-round match at Wimbledon last week was also a reason for his withdrawal.
“I also wouldn’t want to take an opportunity away from a healthy Aussie athlete ready to represent the country. I will also take all the time I need to get my body right. Good luck to all the Aussies competing and I’ll see you back on the court real soon,” he said.
The Kyrgios statement came just before the Japan government imposed a state of emergency, which meant that crowds won’t be allowed to attend events related to the Tokyo Olympics starting on July 23.
Tennis Australia will now have to decide on the replacement for Kyrgios in the squad of 11 headlined by Ashleigh Barty.