ATP Tour

Kyrgios skips Rotterdam for NBA event

Nick Kyrgios (Getty Images)
Nick Kyrgios (Getty Images)

The Hague - Australian tennis hothead Nick Kyrgios will skip next year's Rotterdam Open to play an NBA basketball event, organisers said, questioning whether he was "100 percent motivated" after an on-court meltdown in Shanghai.

Kyrgios, 21, was due to appear at the ATP 500 Rotterdam in February but organisers released him from his contract so he can play the NBA All Star Weekend in New Orleans instead.

It comes after Kyrgios was fined and received a three-week ban - rising to eight weeks if he doesn't seek help to curb his temper -- for giving up on points, swearing and arguing with fans and the chair umpire in Shanghai.

"We could hold him to his word, but we think it does not make much sense to put him on as he is not 100 percent motivated," tournament director and former player Richard Krajicek said in an official statement.

Krajicek also told a Dutch news website that organisers wanted to see a "top player on court". "We did it because you saw what happened in China when he was tired and (tennis) has little meaning. Kyrgios prefers his passion over his profession," nos.nl cited him as saying.

"He is doing the right thing because he gets crazy if he only thinks about tennis for six months."

Kyrgios has frequently courted controversy since turning pro in 2013. Last year he received a suspended one-month ban for making a lewd comment about Stan Wawrinka's girlfriend.

He has also said he dislikes playing tennis, insisting that he prefers basketball.

Earlier this week the world number 14 indicated he wanted to play fewer tournaments in 2017. During a question and answer session on Twitter, when asked what his goals were for next year, Kyrgios replied: "More time off."

Kyrgios was also asked if he enjoyed playing tennis, to which he said: "lol".

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