Creating a racket undermines tennis greats
Tennis players with a "me against the world" attitude are
hampering their own success, says a University of Queensland sports
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences
Crudgington - who has coached athletes to medals at two
Olympics - made the comments as the "bad boy" antics of young
Australian Nick Kyrgios at Wimbledon continue to draw
Novak Djokovic sealed victory in Sunday's Wimbledon final
against Roger Federer, while Kyrgios and former number one and
fellow Australian Pat Rafter traded barbs in the media
"Top players can be passionate and feel they have received a bad
decision, but generally they have the emotional skills to get over
it quickly and move on," Mr Crudgington said.
"A 'me against the world' mentality that some players carry is
not conducive to winning at the highest level.
"Few players reach Kyrgios's heights and face the resulting on
and off-court pressures. The intensity of those pressures can be
"Fortunately, like other skill sets, mental approach can be
All sports had players with poor behaviour, Mr Crudgington said,
but those in tennis were highlighted due to being on court for
sustained periods of time.
It was concerning when players abused umpires, administrators
"Generally it's a learned behaviour from the athlete's formative
years," he said.
"I feel Krygios's recent behaviour is a result of competition
pressure and dealing with his own expectations at a relatively
"However, right from the start of his competition career, this
type of behaviour should have been jumped on.
"Even outstanding junior players should never be allowed to
"I'm sure that people who knew Kyrgios and some other players in
their junior days are not surprised to see their later on-court
"The behaviour would have been evident early on and some of
these people could have stepped in and nipped it in the bud, but
Mr Crudgington coached the Australian women's softball team to
bronze medals at the Sydney and Atlanta Olympic Games.
He was later High Performance Manager for Diving Australia in
preparation for the Athens Olympics and has consulted to the
Australian Institute of Sport, Queensland Academy of Sport and
national and state bodies for rugby union, rowing, volleyball,
basketball and bowls.
Media: Bob Crudgington +617 3365
UQ Communications Robert Burgin +617 3346 3035, +61 0448 410