News Kyrgios blasts into Wimbledon semi-finals as ex-girlfriend hits back over alleged assault
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Kyrgios blasts into Wimbledon semi-finals as ex-girlfriend hits back over alleged assault

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Nick Kyrgios is tipping his blockbuster with Rafael Nadal to be “the most-watched match of all-time” after casting aside his domestic dramas to gatecrash the Wimbledon semi-finals for the first time.

Kyrgios had too much firepower for Cristian Garin, eliminating the unseeded Chilean 6-4 6-3 7-6 (7-5) in two hours and 13 minutes on Wednesday — barely 24 hours after being summonsed to a Canberra court over an assault allegation.

The 27-year-old is required in the ACT Magistrates Court on August 2 to potentially face a common assault charge amid reports he grabbed his former girlfriend Chiara Passari in an incident before Christmas last year.

“Obviously, I have a lot of thoughts, a lot of things I want to say, kind of my side about it,” Kyrgios said after beating Garin.

“Obviously, I’ve been advised by my lawyers that I’m unable to say anything at this time.

“Look, I understand everyone wants to kind of ask about it and all that, but I can’t give you too much on that right now.”

The Daily Telegraph reports Ms Passari has spoken out against people who have questioned the timing of the assault allegations against her ex during Wimbledon. She told the newspaper she went to ACT police in December but it took until this week for the tennis star to be summonsed.

“The world doesn’t revolve around Wimbledon,” Ms Passari said.

Nick Kyrgios Chiara Passari
Nick Kyrgios and former partner Chiara Passari.

It was difficult to know whether or not the looming court date was bothering Krygios, as he delivered a typical display on show court No.1.

The hot-head berated his courtside box — which included his father, sister and current girlfriend Costeen Hatzi — almost from the get-go for apparently not offering sufficient support.

“After everything … I do expect more,” Kyrgios bellowed early on.

“Something …. SOMETHING! There’s five of you. Five of you,” he pleaded after failing to convert either of two break-back points in the sixth game.

But after losing the first nine points of the match, Kyrgios screamed “let’s go” when he eventually claimed a service break to forge a 4-3 lead en route to taking the opening set.

The combustible Canberran continued his running verbal battle throughout the match, often reminding his entourage how Garin had fought back from two sets to love to defeat fellow Australian Alex de Minaur in the fourth round.

“Does anyone know that? Does anyone know we’re at Wimbledon?” he moaned.

“Good job,” he clapped mockingly to his box on another occasion after double-faulting before repeating the gesture when Garin got a lucky net chord to bring up a double break point.

Nick Kyrgios says he ‘never thought’ he’d be at a Wimbledon semi-final. Photo: Getty

Despite all the theatrics, Kyrgios outclassed the South American in straight sets to finally live up to his rich potential and reach a grand slam semi-final for the first time.

Showing no signs of the shoulder injury that troubled him in his previous match, Kyrgios rocketed down another 17 aces to take his tournament-leading tally to 120.

He dropped serve only once — in the opening game of the match after Garin elected to return.

Kyrgios is the first Australian to progress to the men’s singles semi-finals at the All England Club since 2002 champion Lleyton Hewitt made the last four 17 years ago.

“I just never thought I’d be at a semi-finals of a grand slam. I thought my ship had sailed,” an emotional Kyrgios said after taking several minutes in his courtside chair to soak in the moment.

“Honestly, I didn’t go about things great earlier in my career and I thought I may have wasted that little window.

“But just really proud about the way that I’ve come back out here and with my team and been able to enjoy it.”

He said his looming court date didn’t overly affect him during the match, but that he was obviously aware.

“I’m only human,” he said.

“Obviously, I read about it and obviously everyone else was asking questions. It was hard.

“It was hard to kind of just focus on kind of the mission at hand. It was quarter-finals of Wimbledon today. I know deep down that’s what I was prepared for.

“It didn’t really affect my preparation at all. I knew I stayed true to myself and give my best performance today.”

Krgyios, the one-time world No.13, and now ranked 40th after playing only a limited schedule in 2022, will face 22-time grand slam champion Rafael Nadal on Friday for a place in the final.

Nadal beat American 11th seed Taylor Fritz 3-6 7-5 3-6 7-5 7-6 (10-4) in his quarter final – but has sounded a warning about a painful abdominal injury that he has been battling. Asked if he’d be fit for Friday, Nadal shrugged: “I don’t know.

“Honestly, I can’t give you a clear answer because if, tomorrow, another thing happens, I will be a liar.

“It’s the player decision, but at the same time I need to know different opinions and need to check everything the proper way, no?

“Something more important than winning Wimbledon, that is the health. Let’s see how this is going.”

Three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic and British ninth seed Cameron Norrie will feature in Friday’s other semi.

-with AAP