As a coach of 4 decades and a keen tournament player, my spontaneous thoughts are:
When players step on the court, they are a product of their coaches and mentors.
Australia and her players are blessed to have Lleyton Hewitt to be Davis Cup captain.
Ex no 1. players from the US and Europe, rarely volunteer themselves to be Davis captains so soon after hanging up their racquets as professional players.
NICK Kyrgios admits an inspired David Goffin was simply too good for him in their absorbing Davis Cup semi-final reverse singles clash in Brussels.
Leading 2-1 going into the final day, victory for Kyrgios would have guided Australia to a first final appearance in 14 years, at home to France in November.
After sealing the opening set with a 204kph second serve, Kyrgios was broken in his very next game and Goffin never looked back on his way to a 6-7 (7-4) 6-4 6-4 6-4 victory.
It was the first time Kyrgios had lost to the world No.12 in three encounters, but the 22-year-old admitted there not much more he could have done to stop the 1.8 metre baseliner who has now won 15 of his last 16 Davis Cup singles rubbers.
“When he is playing at that level he is up there with the best in the world,” Kyrgios said.
“He served unbelievably well today. He was moving great, hitting great. He was too good.”
Kyrgios started the match strongly but was unable to take advantage of the seven break points that came his way in the opening three matches.
Despite hurling down 24 aces and more than playing his part in a high-quality encounter, Kyrgios said not converting his chances cost him.
“I thought I started the match really well, I had a couple of opportunities early and could have been up three or four love up,” he said.
“It was a tough match but he played at a pretty high level, I thought the match in general was a pretty high level. It was too good by him today.
“He was too good today and better as a whole.
“But we win as a team we lose a team.”
Goffin said his performance was one of the best of his career and claimed he’d never served better – sending down 20 aces in spite of his slight frame.
“The serve was the key today,” Goffin said.
“I served probably the best match of my career. I had so many aces during the match and a really good percentage.
“I was ready for a big fight, point after point and I stayed focused. I am really happy to win this one.”